Chapter 5.40
CANVASSING AND CERTIFICATION OF ELECTION RESULTS

Sections:

5.40.010    Canvass board.

5.40.020    Canvass of returns.

5.40.030    Procedures for handling early, absentee, questioned, and write-in ballots.

5.40.040    Voters not on official registration list.

5.40.050    Determination of tie votes.

5.40.060    Certification of the election results.

5.40.010 Canvass board.

Before each election the assembly shall appoint three or more qualified voters, who shall not be members of any precinct election boards for that election, who shall constitute the election canvass board for that election. All members of the canvass board, before entering upon their duties, must subscribe to the oath required of all public officers by the Constitution of the state of Alaska in the manner prescribed by the borough clerk. [Ord. No. 1357, §2, 7-5-05. Code 1974 §25.80.010.]

5.40.020 Canvass of returns.

(a)    No later than the seventh day following each election, the election canvass board shall meet in public session and canvass all election returns. In full view of those present, the election canvass board shall judge the applicability of early, absentee, and questioned ballots, shall open and tally those accepted, and shall compile the total votes cast in the election. The canvass of the ballot vote counted by the precinct election boards shall be accomplished by reviewing the tallies of the recorded vote to check for mathematical error by comparing totals with the precinct’s certificate of results. All obvious errors found by the election canvass in the transfer of totals from the precinct tally sheets to the precinct certificate of results shall be corrected by the canvass board. A mistake which has been made in precinct returns that is not clearly an error in the transfer of the results from the tallies to the certificate of results empowers the canvassing board to recommend a recount of the results of the precinct or precincts for that portion of the returns in question.

(b)    Upon completion of the canvass, the canvassing board shall prepare a final certificate of the results of votes cast by early, absentee, and questioned ballots and of votes cast by regular ballot, and shall prepare a written report of the results to be submitted to the assembly. [Ord. No. 1920A, §3, 7-6-20; Ord. No. 1357, §2, 7-5-05. Code 1974 §25.80.020.]

5.40.030 Procedures for handling early, absentee, questioned, and write-in ballots.

(a)    Absentee Ballots. The large envelope shall be opened and the secrecy sleeve containing the ballot shall be mixed with other absentee ballot secrecy sleeves. The mixed secrecy sleeves shall be drawn and the ballots removed, and the ballots shall be counted according to the rules for determining properly marked ballots.

(b)    Early Ballots. The large envelope shall be opened and the secrecy sleeve containing the ballot shall be mixed with other early ballot secrecy sleeves. The mixed secrecy sleeves shall be drawn and the ballots removed, and the ballots shall be counted according to the rules for determining properly marked ballots.

(c)    Questioned Ballots. The canvassing board by majority vote may refuse to accept the question and count the ballot of a person properly questioned. If the ballot is not refused, the large envelope shall be opened, the secrecy sleeve shall be mixed with other absentee ballot secrecy sleeves and counted the same as absentee ballots. If the board accepts the question the ballot envelope shall not be opened and shall be placed in a separate envelope with the statement of the basis for the accepted question. The envelope shall be labeled “rejected ballots” and shall be preserved with other voted ballots.

(d)    Write-in Ballots. In counting votes for a write-in candidate, the canvassing board shall review write-in ballots which contain any abbreviation, misspelling, or other minor variation in the form of the name of a write-in candidate and determine whether the intention of the voter can be ascertained. If the intention of the voter can be ascertained the canvass board shall so find and shall count the vote for the write-in candidate intended by the voter.

(e)    No absentee or early ballot shall be counted if the voter failed to properly execute the certificate, or if the witness or the officer or other person authorized by law to administer the oath failed to affix his signature.

(f)    After certification of the election persons who voted an absentee, early, or questioned ballot which was not counted by the canvass board shall be provided a written explanation of the reason their vote was not counted. [Ord. No. 1920A, §3, 7-6-20; Ord. No. 1604, §3, 9-19-11; Ord. No. 1357, §2, 7-5-05. Code 1974 §25.80.030.]

5.40.040 Voters not on official registration list.

A person whose registration has been cancelled under AS 15.07.130 and who votes a questioned ballot shall not have the ballot counted. [Ord. No. 1357, §2, 7-5-05. Code 1974 §25.80.040.]

5.40.050 Determination of tie votes.

(a)    If two or more candidates tie in having the same number of votes for the same office and their standing is such that if a recount broke the tie one of them would be elected, the canvass board shall immediately proceed with a recount of votes cast for those candidates. No recounts will be conducted for ties involving candidates that did not receive enough votes to be elected. The recount shall be conducted in accordance with Chapter 5.30 KGBC.

(b)    If there is still a failure to elect because of a tie vote after completion of the recount, the election shall be determined fairly, by lot, from among the candidates tying, in a meeting of the assembly and under its direction. After the determination has been made by lot, the assembly shall certify the result. [Ord. No. 1357, §2, 7-5-05. Code 1974 §25.80.050.]

5.40.060 Certification of the election results.

(a)    As soon as possible after completion of the canvass, but no later than the second Monday following the election, the assembly shall meet in public session to receive the report of the canvass board. In the event that the second Monday should fall on a borough holiday, the meeting shall be held on the next day which is not a holiday. If, after considering the report, the assembly determines that the election was validly held, the election shall be certified by resolution and entered upon the minutes of the meeting, together with the total number of votes cast for each candidate and for or against each proposition or question.

(b)    If the canvass board reports that a failure to comply with provisions of state law and borough ordinances, or an illegal election practice has occurred, and that such failure is sufficient to change the outcome of the election, then the assembly may exclude the votes cast in one or more precincts where such failure or illegal practices occurred from the total returns, or may declare the entire election invalid and order a new election.

(c)    If the canvass board reports an apparent discrepancy in the returns of one or more precincts, the assembly may order a recount of votes cast in said precinct or precincts. Such recount shall be held in accordance with the procedures outlined in Chapter 5.45 KGBC and the results shall be reported to the assembly. The assembly shall meet as soon as possible to certify the results of the election recount.

(d)    Upon certification of a valid election, the borough clerk shall deliver to each person elected to office a certificate of election, signed by the borough clerk and authenticated by the seal of the borough. [Ord. No. 1920A, §4, 7-6-20; Ord. No. 1357, §2, 7-5-05. Code 1974 §25.80.060.]