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Board of Elections action comforting

Though it might have thrown some folks for a loop when election results did not immediately become available after the official closing of polls Tuesday evening, the delay is actually a good sign that those in our board of elections offices are doing things by the book.

The manner in which this primary was conducted was unprecedented. It was postponed and conducted by mail-in ballot because of concerns over COVID-19. We all knew there could be hiccups, and, in fact, there were concerns about the security of the vote.

That is why it is comforting to know Washington County Board of Elections Director Mandy Amos was aware immediately a mistake had been made regarding 200 ballots. There were checks in place to flag that error AND to allow her office to correct the miscount by the early hours of Wednesday morning.

She and her team did not carelessly release the results they had, as every vote truly does count. They did not make assumptions.

“Whenever we get an absentee ballot in we have to compare the information they have on the envelope with what we have in our system and then log that we’ve received their ballot back,” Amos said.

Because those envelopes had been saved on a retention schedule, it was a matter of going back through and addressing the miscount.

Certainly there are still parts of this country where a mistake of “only” 200 votes might have been swept under the rug (or not found at all); and an early guesstimate of results would have been irresponsibly released to the public.

Not here. So, while it may have caused a little temporary alarm, Washington County residents should take comfort that the folks in our board of elections office take their jobs — and their responsibility to you — very seriously.

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