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Recount Doesn’t Change Outcome In Medical Lake

A recount of the ballots for mayor of Medical Lake on Tuesday didn’t change the outcome from last week.

Challenger Jim Hill defeated Mayor Sharie Stearns by a total of 35 votes, 452 to 417.

The recount was done by hand Tuesday. One ballot was added to Hill’s total because the computer didn’t count it. The punch in the ballot was partially separated from the card, but not enough for the computer to recognize it.

County Auditor Bill Donahue said the canvassing board ruled the ballot was legal.

Stearns, who led following the election night results, paid for the recount because she feared some votes were counted more than once. She met with Donahue on Tuesday evening to go over the results. She declined to comment afterward.

Donahue said the results matched the number of ballots issued at the polling places and the number of absentee ballots received at the elections office.

A total of 58 write-in votes were cast in Medical Lake, including 57 votes for a Medical Lake City Council challenger, who lost. The ballots attached to those write-ins were not counted until last week.

A majority of the write-in voters favored Hill in the mayor’s race, and those votes put Hill ahead of Stearns last week.

, DataTimes