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Tue, Sept. 24

County has 2,600 more ballots to count

PRESCOTT – Yavapai County election officials have 10 days after the Nov. 2 general election to check approximately 2,600 provisional ballots that voters turned in.

The ballots are "provisional" because officials need to make sure that the people who turned in the ballots were eligible to vote. For a variety of reasons, such as an address change, the voters' names were not on registration lists at the precincts where they voted Tuesday.

The Yavapai County Board of Supervisors plans to approve the final general election numbers during its Nov. 15 meeting.

Even if all 2,600 of the provisional ballots are valid, they would not be enough to change the results of any county, state or federal races.

With 100 percent of the county's 105 precincts reporting, except for the provisional ballots, 81.51 percent of the county's 99,848 registered voters went to the polls Tuesday or voted early.

Since 1988, the only election that produced a higher percentage county turnout was the 1992 general election when voters across the country chose Bill Clinton as their president. That election attracted 85.97 percent of the county's registered voters.

Approximately 75 percent of the county's residents who have reached voting age are registered voters, based on the 2000 census and current voter registration numbers.

The county had a record number of early voters in this general election at 38,859.

Those who waited until Tuesday's general election day usually had a short wait in line at the polling places, but some precincts, such as Yavapai Hills, reported that voters had to wait as long as an hour in line, county Recorder Patsy Jenny-Colón said. Twenty-minute waits were more common.

This county didn't receive reports of any major problems at the precincts or shortage of polling place workers, county Registrar of Voters Judy Allen-Wise said.

The county did get about 10 calls from people who said they registered to vote at booths outside Kmart, Basha's and Wal-Mart and then weren't on voter lists when they went to the polls, Allen-Wise said. If these people kept their receipts, the county will count their ballots even if they can't find any record of them registering, she said.

The Daily Courier previously reported that the county received allegations of voter fraud at some locations in the Prescott area.

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