Voting return at 52 percent in contentious VCR election |

Voting return at 52 percent in contentious VCR election

John Colson
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO

CARBONDALE, Colorado – According to Garfield County Clerk Jean Alberico’s office, 1,513 ballots have been turned in as of Friday afternoon in the Jan. 31 special election over the fate of the Village at Crystal River development.

That amounts to roughly 52 percent of the 2,877 registered voters in Carbondale’s three precincts, according to Carbondale Town Clerk Cathy Derby.

While it is likely that results will be available on election night, Alberico said on Friday that if the vote split is close, the final result may not be known for more than a week afterward.

Alberico is conducting the election largely because she has statutory authority to reject ballots if there are any questions about the validity of a vote, while Derby does not.

The mail-ballot election, which started on Jan. 9, concludes on election day, Jan. 31.

All ballots must be turned in by 7 p.m. Tuesday to either of these locations:

• Carbondale Town Hall, 511 Colorado Ave., Carbondale

• Garfield County Clerk’s Office, 109 Eighth St., Glenwood Springs.

It is now too late to mail a ballot, and late voters are advised to hand-deliver their ballots to the Carbondale or Glenwood Springs offices.

The Carbondale Town Hall will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday and from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on election day, Tuesday, Jan. 31.

In addition, there will be a representative of the Garfield County clerk’s office at Carbondale’s Town Hall on election day to deal with requests for replacement ballots, questions about voter registration and other electoral matters.

The Garfield County Courthouse main entrance will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday, and ballots may be dropped in a special box just inside the door to avoid going through courthouse security.

The county clerk’s office itself, in Room 200 on the second floor of the courthouse, will be open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday.

On Tuesday, the courthouse and the clerk’s office will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. to accept ballots and answer questions.

Votes will be counted on the fourth floor of the Garfield County Courthouse on election night, and unofficial results should be available that evening.

But Alberico said, “If it’s close, we’re not going to know until eight days after the election.”

She said already some ballots have been rejected for signature discrepancies, meaning either there was no signature on the ballot envelope or the signature did not match with records kept in the courthouse.

In those cases, Alberico said, letters have been sent to the addresses of the registered voters involved, informing the voters of the discrepancy and giving them until eight days after the election to send in an affidavit affirming their signature.

Another possible delay, Alberico said, involves the ballots sent to those in service overseas, which also have an eight-day grace period.

There are only five overseas ballots that have yet to arrive, the clerk said. “But if it’s really close, that could make a difference.”

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