Some of the election candidates are gathered at town hall to watch the returns. Photo Andrea DeMeer

Some of the election candidates are gathered at town hall to watch the returns. Photo Andrea DeMeer

#PrincetonVotes

The Princeton municipal election is all over but the counting

Stay with The Spotlight to get elections results first

The Princeton election is officially in a box – or rather a series of boxes.

Voting ended at 8 p.m. at the Princeton Legion and all that’s left to do is the math.

Three people are running for mayor – incumbent Frank Armitage, Spencer Coyne and Leona Guerster – while 15 hopefuls, including all members of the present council, are seeking one of four seats at the table.

The ballot for the councillor election was at least 14 inches long.

Chief Elections Officer Cheryl Martens told The Spotlight the process for counting ballots is meticulous, with three people separately tallying the results as read out by the presiding officer, who reviews each ballot and holds it up.

After about 25 ballots are read, the election workers in charge of tally sheets will confirm they have all recorded the same results – and if there are discrepancies they will be addressed before another batch of ballots is reviewed.

“It’s going to take a while,” said Martens.

Candidates are allowed to have scrutineers present to oversee the proceedings.

Martens, who is also Princeton’s CAO, has organized elections for the past 20 years in different communities.

Experience tells her that with the number of candidates and voter turnout there are likely to be some ballots that are not counted as they are spoiled.

“I’ve seen people deface ballots with swear words and drawing little devils on peoples names’. I’ve also seen people not mark ballots at all…Maybe they don’t agree with anyone who is running but they go in to look like they are voting.”

Another way ballots are commonly spoiled is when people either sign or initial them, she added.

Follow the Spotlight’s Facebook page throughout the night as we will be live streaming the results as they are called in.

Related: Vote could be de facto referendum on pool and trail

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andrea.demeer@similkameenspotlight.com

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