By Jesse Wood
Nov. 8, 2012. Last night, Watauga County Board of Elections Director Jane Hodges sent out an email reminding the press that the results on election night are preliminary and unofficial because auditing steps must occur between election night and the upcoming canvass on Friday, Nov. 16, at 11 a.m. – at which time provisional ballots will be considered.
However, the email also said, “In auditing the signed returns by the precinct officials, it appears that Transfer 2 precinct was input into the computer twice and has resulted in a slight difference in voted totals reported on election night. This correction does not result in any change in who the apparent winners were, or in the length of terms that they might receive.”
On Thursday morning, Hodges said that 789 votes were counted twice in Transfer 2 precinct.
The closest race was Watauga County’s school board, where six candidates vied for three seats. Jay Fenwick came in fourth place, only 102 votes less than Henries and 273 votes behind Reese.
Watauga County Board of Election’s officials noted that 321 provisional ballots have not been accounted for. Once those are deemed valid or not valid, those numbers will be added to the current totals. Fenwick had 10,527 votes — only 102 votes less than Ron Henries and 273 votes behind Brenda Reese.
“If anything it helped Henries, put enough spread on his,” Hodges said. “With adding provisionals, it does not change that much to be out of the one percent.”