Recount starts today in District 2 Island County commissioner's race

The hand recount in the close race for the District 2 position on the Island County Board of Commissioners will start Monday.

Democrat Angie Homola was named the winner in the race when the 2008 General Election was certified as official Tuesday afternoon.

Homola — an architect taking her first shot at elected office — unseated 16-year Republican Mac McDowell by 60 votes.

The final vote tally was 19,222 votes for Homola, 19,162 votes for McDowell.

Homola earned 50 percent of the vote, while McDowell finished with 49.9 percent.

Because of the narrow gap in the race, however, state law requires a hand recount of the results.

On Monday morning, the county canvassing board will meet and break the seals on the ballot boxes so county elections staff can begin sorting ballots by precinct.

The actual counting of ballots is expected to start Tuesday morning. Elections staff are scheduled to continuing counting the vote through Friday, with the canvassing board scheduled to meet again on the afternoon of Monday, Dec. 8, to certify the election.

Observers from both parties are expected to be on hand during the recount.

Earlier this week, Homola wasn't ready to claim victory.

After the swearing-in ceremony in Superior Court Judge Alan Hancock's courtroom in Coupeville for newly-elected Commissioner Helen Price Johnson and Auditor Sheilah Crider Tuesday afternoon, Homola said she was waiting for the recount process to be complete.

"We need to go through the correct protocol," she said. "But I'm encouraged because I've been welcomed to meet with Island County department heads. I'm looking forward to serving the people in this county."

Noting the huge crowd on hand— estimated at more than 130 — Homola asked Hancock if her own ceremony could be done in a larger space.

Hancock assured her that could be done.

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