City to hand-count special election ballots

In an effort to mitigate anticipated legal fees as a result of Aspen resident Marilyn Marks’ involvement in the Jan. 15, 2013, special municipal election, Council unanimously approved staff recommendation to change from an electronic count of the ballots to a hand count.

The decision came Tuesday after Council adjourned from executive session and reopened the public meeting. This decision in no way reflects the confidence the city has with the election plan previously laid out, including the electronic counting of ballots. Marks has sued numerous counties and municipalities in Colorado, including Chaffee County, costing the taxpayers of those communities thousands of dollars.

Audrey Gilpin, designated election official, said the city has followed every rule and regulation required of a municipal election. A hand count for a community the size of Salida will be an arduous task for staff and election judges and will add about $2,000 to election costs. Hand-counting the ballots is a way to alleviate one of Marks’ concerns and mitigate potential legal fees.

Depending on the number of ballots received, the hand-counting of ballots may take six or seven days. Counting must be completed within seven days of the election. Due to the length of time necessary to complete a hand count, counting will begin Fri., Jan. 11. The Secretary of State has approved the amendment to the election plan.

The Citizen is happy to provide a forum for comments and discussion. Please be civil, truthful, and relevant. Please suggest removal of comments that violate these standards. Real names are appreciated.

3 Responses to “City to hand-count special election ballots”

  1. Cutler Ferchaud

    What a bunch of chickens. You let some kook from Aspen of all places dictate your behavior. Shame on you. Home rule is about us, Salida, not some far flung realm of pseudo-reality called Aspen. Tell Marilyn to kiss your ass.

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  2. Joe Judd

    Do I understand correctly that Ms. Marks is a big supporter of CAG, the group against Home Rule? Which then begs the question, do we have more lawsuits to look forward to if the CAG side wins or loses? I hope not.

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  3. Melodee Hallett

    Marilyn Marks is not related to CAG or a supporter.

    CAG is an issue committee that will dissolve after the election.

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