Morro Bay council race still unclear but closer to runoff

June 6, 2014

election-2014By JOSH FRIEDMAN

The race for the final seat on the Morro Bay City Council remains the lone unclear result from Tuesday’s primary election, but an updated vote count shows that chances are growing that the race will head for a runoff.

In the primary election, candidates for the Morro Bay City Council must have their names appear on more than 50 percent of ballots in order to win a council seat outright. On Tuesday night, newcomer candidate Matt Makowetski clearly won a seat on the council, as his name appeared on more than 60 percent of ballots submitted.

But, the race for the second seat remained up in the air Tuesday night. Newcomer John Headding easily edged incumbent Nancy Johnson, but Headding’s tally hovered right around 50 percent. In the final election night tally, Headding’s name appeared on 49.86 percent of ballots.

Since then, San Luis Obispo County elections officials have counted the names on an additional 704 ballots submitted by Morro Bay voters. As of 5 p.m. Thursday, Headding’s tally is at 49.70 percent.

Elections officials have still yet to count 137 ballots from Morro Bay. In order to surpass 50 percent, Headding’s name must appear on 81, or 59 percent, of the remaining ballots.

Countywide, 8,208 ballots remain uncounted. Of those, 269 ballots are from undetermined locations, and some could have come from Morro Bay.

In addition to the Morro Bay council race, two other elections in the county failed to reach a conclusion Tuesday.

Incumbent Caren Ray and challenger Lynn Compton are in a runoff for the fourth district county supervisor seat. As of 5 p.m. Thursday, Compton has received 46.66 percent of the votes, and Ray has garnered 42.34 percent.

Compton’s tally increased slightly since Tuesday, while Ray’s decreased slightly.

A runoff will also occur in the county clerk-recorder’s race, which pits Tommy Gong against Amanda King. Gong now has received 45.75 percent of the vote, while King has tallied 43.49 percent.

Elections officials will resume counting ballots at 9:30 a.m. Friday. They are are expected to finalize results next week.

When the counting concludes, voter turnout for the primary is likely to surpass 40 percent in San Luis Obispo County.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

John Barta and his friends are bullies and manipulators….didn’t work well for them, the voters objected and voted their friends OUT!!

I’m writing in a candidate!!

Settle it in the octogon.

We need to be rid of the ‘primary’, in MB,

John Barta has (had) his own agenda when he wrote , collected signatures for and the Primary voting method hit Morro Bay. It has been a disaster expensive, wasteful and resulted in an abuse of power when the new Council didn’t take their seats for 6 months, the Lame Ducks made a mess of things!!

Some people think that adding the primary was a strategy to keep the old boy/girl netwrok in power. The old boys/girls always had a lot of money behind then, making it easier for their candidates to afford two campaigns.

Well, he wasn’t smart enough to get his slate of candidates elected :)


Quit saying you are new to the area when you are not.

Has this ‘primary’ ever back fired on John Barta!! He thought he’d get his people elected but NO, his people are struggling to retain one seat. John and Nancy can duke it out!! lol, can’t wait for that campaign.