The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Election results made official


November 7, 2019

Tom LaVenture/Daily Globe

The Gogebic County Canvasing Board, from left, Liz Sweeney, Donna Frello, Gerry Pelissero, clerk of court and register of deeds for Gogebic County, and Geraldine Burt, board chair, prepare to review Tuesday general election results and certify them as official on Wednesday.

BESSEMER - The Gogebic County Canvasing Board approved Tuesday's general election results on Wednesday.

There were 16 election items to review from the cities of Ironwood, Bessemer, Wakefield, Marenisco Township and Bessemer Public School District. The review board found that polling stations and election officials in each municipality were certified and the election ballots matched the number of scanned ballots.

Gerry Pelissero, clerk of court and register of deeds for Gogebic County, presented the results to Geraldine Burt - board chair and a board member for 35 years - along with board members Liz Sweeney and Donna Frello, who is also chief deputy clerk for the county.

The one issue the canvassing board did have to consider was 66 unresolved write-in votes for the Bessemer City Council contest.

James J. Prezkop declared himself a write-in candidate prior to the deadline of two weeks before the election to be eligible on the ballot, Pelissero said. There were 45 write-in votes for Prezkop that were indisputable but there were 21 others that the board needed to consider, he said.

The 45 votes for Prezkop that were not in dispute were from voters who had filled in the oval to state the intention of entering a write-in candidate's name, he said. They also spelled Prezkop's first and last name correctly, he said.

There were 10 votes where the board needed to determine "voter intent," Pelissero said. These were ballots where the voter checked the oval for write-in candidate but then spelled Prezkop's first or last name incorrectly, and it was up to the board to determine if the voter intended to enter Prezkop, he said.

The 10 ballots in question with misspellings were determined to be valid votes for Prezkop and were approved, bringing his total to 55 votes. The result did not change the outcome of the five candidates who had been declared winners by unofficial totals.

The 11 remaining unresolved ballots were determined to be invalid votes based on factors of failing to fill in the oval to declare a write-in vote, entering a name that was not an official write-in candidate, or the writing was ineligible or the space was left blank.

The Marenisco election on the question of the repealing or continuing the marijuana ordinance, had one provisional ballot from a voter who either did not bring identification or for whatever reason did not qualify to go through voting tabulator, he said. So there were 212 names of voters but 210 votes that were tabulated, as there was also a blank ballot printed without a corresponding voter.

The results of the canvasing did not alter outcomes of any of the unofficial results released on Tuesday evening.


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