Waverly holds village election Voting machine problem leads to delay in results
Election officials in Waverly continued to count ballots for this year's municipal election as of press time Tuesday.
Officials spent Tuesday night after polls closed at 9 p.m. counting machine votes, paper ballots, absentee ballots and write-in votes after the village had problems with its two lever-style voting machines, according to village clerk Michele Wood.
Candidates inspected both machines on Friday, at which point they were found to be working, Wood said. However, neither machine was functional Tuesday morning, she said.
Village residents who arrived during the first half-hour of voting, which began at noon Tuesday, cast their votes on paper ballots, Wood said. Officials were then able to get one machine to work, she said.
Officials relied on paper ballots again later in the day, when the voting machine ran out of paper, until another machine was brought in, Wood said. The second machine was inspected prior to use by both Martin Borko and Mark Bakley, candidates in the village's contested mayoral race, she said.
Election officials followed protocol in handling the situation, Wood said.
Villages are able to use the lever-style machines until 2014, under a state-wide mandate signed last fall by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The machines save the village money and, until Tuesday, had never failed to work, Wood said.
"There's never been a problem," Wood said. "When they're working, they're foolproof."
A large number of voters in Tuesday's election also meant there were many more ballots for officials to count than usual. Over 200 people had voted by 6 p.m. Tuesday, with three hours left to go. Waverly's municipal elections typically don't draw that large a response, Wood said, but contested races tend to attract more voters.
Tuesday's election "has been the biggest in a long time," Wood said.
Borko, running on the People's Party ticket, and Bakley, running under the Bakley Party ticket, both vied Tuesday for the two-year term previously held by Kyle McDuffee, who did not run for re-election.
In addition, three candidates - incumbent Jerry Sinsabaugh and newcomers Christopher Brewster and Michael Steck - ran for three two-year trustee terms. Brewster and Steck ran for terms previously held by Ken Goodwin and Kyle Sorensen. All three candidates ran under the Progressive Party ticket.
Current village justice Richard Koons ran unopposed for another four-year term in Tuesday's election.
Amanda Renko can be reached at (570) 888-9652; or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.