No recounts in two close Mount Jackson elections
MOUNT JACKSON – Although two races were decided by two votes or less in the recent mayoral and Town Council elections, there will be no recounts.
Sarona Irvin, Shenandoah County Circuit Court clerk, said that none of the candidates filed for a recount by the 5 p.m. Monday deadline.
In the mayoral race, incumbent Bucky Miller’s 133 votes barely fended off challenger Marsha Whetzel’s 131 votes.
Three Town Council seats were also up for grabs, and the most votes went to incumbent Roger Rudy and Judy Fultz. Bonnie Good secured the third seat with 121 votes, which narrowly edged out incumbent Whitney Miller’s 120 votes.
Miller stated in an email that she opted not to request a recount because if it turned out that she indeed lost the election, she would be held responsible for all associated fees. She said that fee would be determined by the circuit court, and “it could be whatever strikes their fancy. That’s not a gamble I want to take.”
Whetzel could not be reached for a comment on why she opted to not request a recount.
Irvin confirmed that if Miller ended up losing again in a recount that she would be responsible for the fees. If it turned out that Miller won in a recount, the costs would be incurred by the county.
Irvin added, however, that she does not know how much such a recount would have cost.
“This is not something we do on a daily basis,” Irvin said. “It’s one of the things where I would have to get the book and look.”
According to the Virginia Board of Election’s website, any candidate requesting a recount must post a bond of $10 per precinct. Irvin said she is not sure how that would translate to a town election.
Andrea Gaines of the Virginia Department of Elections said the department does not know how much a recount would cost for a Town Council election because it would be funded locally.