The plot concerning East Carbon's three open council seats continues to thicken, as Tuesday's official canvass brought the results of the Sept. 13 primary election into question. According to East Carbon City Recorder Liz Holt, Janice Hunt received one vote from the five provisional ballots cast on Sept. 13, tying her with fellow candidate Lynn Archuleta for the sixth and final position in November's general election.
"Following our initial primary on Sept. 13 the results were recorded as 33 votes for Janice and 34 votes for Lynn," explained Holt. "However, during our canvass the provisional ballots provided for a tie."
Because of the tie, the Lieutenant Governor's office now holds that the two candidates will "draw lots" to see who moves forward into November.
That would be simple enough if both candidates happened to be in the area, but the problem is, they are not.
"The issue we now face is that while Hunt is here in Carbon County, Archuleta is out of town and we haven't been able to reach him," said Holt.
The Lt. Governor's office also stipulated to Holt that the drawing must take place within five days of the canvass in order to be legal, making Archuleta's absence all the more problematic.
"We hope to be able to get him on the phone, and have a family member represent him while we draw the straws," explained the East Carbon Recorder. "We just need to find him so we can get permission."
The city office had been unable to contact Archuleta as of press time.
"Lynn and I are good friends and that is the hard part about all this," commented Janice Hunt upon learning of the tie. "I wish he wasn't out of town. We were hoping to both move on in this election but I am glad at least one of us will have the opportunity to run."
Once the tie is cleared up, East Carbon will have six candidates running for three open council seats, a majority on the five member panel. While uproar in the council chamber has been common place this year, due largely to budget and personnel issues, a relatively small amount of East Carbon's voting public turned out for the primary.
Out of just over 1,000 registered city voters, Holt reported that only 168 total ballots were cast in the Sept. 13 primary, including early and provisional ballots.
Joining either Hunt or Archuleta in the general election will be David Maggio, Incumbent David Avery, Barbara Robinett, Barbara Fisher and Rakele Palmer.