Contra Costa County’s elections department isn’t done counting after all.
The county elections office has received two recount requests for races from the Nov. 8 election. The first concerns the Antioch District 1 City Council race, which Tamisha Torres-Walker won over Joy Motts by three votes. The second is for the Richmond District 2 City Council race, which ended in a tie between Andrew Butt and Cesar Zepeda.
Zepeda ended up winning a tie-breaker drawing of sealed envelopes in Richmond on Tuesday.
California law allows any voter to request a recount. For single-county races, a request for a recount must be made within five days of the county canvass/certification. No reason is required.
“Our office conducted expanded manual tally audits for these two close races, which were attended by the affected candidates and media representatives. These audits were done above and beyond the state requirements and at the county elections division’s cost,” Debi Cooper, Contra Costa County’s clerk-recorder-registrar, said in a statement. “Our staff has done an excellent job and I am confident in their work.”
State law also says the person requesting the recount must pay for it. The cost is determined by the steps involved in the recount, including the sorting of physical paper ballots. The county elections office said it is estimating costs.
The recount will commence once the fees are paid and must begin within seven days of the official request. California law says the fees must be refunded if the recount changes the outcome of the election in favor of the requestor.
If the recount is conducted with the original paper ballots, the recount is expected to take six to seven days.