Chester Select Board race recount set for Monday

By Shawn Cunningham
© 2021 Telegraph Publishing LLC

With just six votes separating two candidates for a three year term on the Chester Select Board, a recount has been scheduled for Monday.

Heather Chase and Scott Blair

Scott Blair, who received 245 votes on Tuesday, asked for a hand recount of the machine read ballots on Wednesday morning and Town Clerk Deborah Aldrich scheduled the recount for 10 a.m. on Monday March 8 in Town Hall, 556 Elm Street. Incumbent select board member Heather Chase received 251 votes. You can see the official tally for all Town Meeting articles here.

On Wednesday afternoon Aldrich explained that the recount will be done by the Board of Civil Authority which is made up of members of the select board, justices of the peace and the town clerk. Chase who is both a select board member and justice of the peace will not participate in the count. Candidates or their representative may witness the recount and the proceedings are open to the public subject to pandemic restrictions and there will be restrictions on how close the public can come to those doing the counting.

The procedure will be that board members and JPs will be paired up and each pair will go through a stack of ballots. One person will read out the vote in the three year term race on each ballot while the other records that on a tally sheet that Aldrich will provide.

The tally sheets will then be added up and Aldrich will certify the results.

On Tuesday night when he said he would ask for a recount Blair also said he would “accept the results.”

According to Vermont statute a candidate can request a recount if the margin of victory is 5 percent or less of the total number of votes cast in the race divided by the number of seats available. In this case, there were 525 votes cast for one seat. Five percent of that would be 26 votes.


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