Ferrara now chasing write-in Hill
November 7, 2014
By DANIEL BLACKBURN
At the tail end of a race he never expected to run, Arroyo Grande Mayor Tony Ferrara will spend the weekend mulling vote totals announced by county voting officials Friday afternoon showing a write-in candidate leading him by 43 votes.
At day’s end, Ferrara still could not crack 50 percent of the votes cast — his unofficial total was 2,896, or 49.63 percent, against those for “write-in,” 2,939, or 50.37 percent.
Most of those write-in votes will likely go to Jim Hill, whose last-minute entry into the campaign to unseat Ferrara gained momentum rapidly and whose success so far has astounded even the most jaded political observers.
In Arroyo Grande, 387 ballots remain to be counted. Those include 164 vote-by-mail ballots; 184 provisional ballots; and 115 election night non-processed ballots.
At present, the counted “write-in” votes incorporate all names written on the ballot, and may or may not be Hill’s. A ballot-by-ballot examination will be conducted by county clerk-recorder officials.
Then, if a recount is needed, additional ballots — those which did not have a blackened oval next to a write-in’s name– would then be tallied. There are about 900 of those, officials said.
Official results might not be final until Wednesday, and if a recount becomes necessary, this race might not be determined until near Thanksgiving.
Ferrara is the newly-elected president of the League of California Cities, a position now jeopardized by Hill’s unexpectedly strong challenge.