Recount for Rifle City Council race officially over |

Recount for Rifle City Council race officially over

Final results didn’t affect previous standings

Nearly a month after election night, final results in the Rifle City Council race resulted in no change for where candidates placed.

This election year saw five Rifle City Council seats up for election. Incumbents Clint Hostettler, Sean Strode and Joe Carpenter retained their seats, while Mayor Barbara Clifton and Mayor Pro Tem Theresa Hamilton — both two-term incumbents — are now termed out.

Ever since initial results were released on election night Nov. 2, Hostettler, Strode and Carpenter held significant leads over their challengers. However, first-time candidates Alicia Gresley, Chis Bornholdt and Derek Davis sat practically neck-and-neck in the race for the final two remaining open seats.

The top four seats win a full four-year term, while the fifth remaining spot holds a term of two years.

Monday’s officially amended results show first-time candidate Gresley winning a full four-year term while fellow first-time candidate Chris Bornholdt won a two-year term by nabbing the final remaining open seat on council. Gresley tallied 652 votes to Bornholdt’s 650.

Additional election challengers included Tamara Degler and Bud Demicill.

“I’m really excited to get to work and meet my fellow council members,” Gresley said Tuesday. “That’s kind of the focus now is what’s ahead.”

By the time more batches of ballots were counted, Gresley held a one-point lead over Bornholdt for the fourth open seat on Rifle City Council, 650-649, on Nov. 3.

Since the race was so close, the Garfield County Clerk’s Office was legally obligated to recount the ballots.

Garfield County Clerk Jean Alberico said, after the county’s canvass board conducted the recount Monday morning, a vote initially for Bornholdt was deducted and Gresley ended up winning the fourth open seat on Rifle City Council by two votes.

Alberico said the difference was due to a missed voter intent.

“A voter had initially voted for Chris Bornholdt but drew a line through that vote, as directed on the voter instructions found on the face of the ballot, but the tabulation system read the mark as a vote for Chris,” she said in a Monday email. “… As the Canvass Board reviewed all the votes cast for the Rifle City Council race, the Canvass Board agreed that the voter intended not to vote for Chris Bornholdt and that vote was corrected to an undervote, which lowered the vote total for Chris Bornholdt by one vote.”

The Citizen Telegram reached out to Bornholdt for this story.

1. Clint Hostletter: 987 votes

2. Joe Carpenter: 971 votes

3: Sean Strode: 736 votes

4: Alicia Gresley: 652 votes

5: Chris Bornholdt: 650 votes

6: Derek Davis: 643 votes

7: Tamara Degler: 602 votes

8: Bud Demicill: 540 votes

Reporter Ray K. Erku can be reached at 612-423-5273 or

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