Friday, Jul 29, 2016
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Board of Elections approves recount of Oregon race

The Lucas County Board of Elections today approved the automatic recount of an Oregon precinct committee race, tying up the last loose end from the May 6 elections.

The four-person elections board met for about 20 minutes.

A race for Republican central committee member in Oregon Precinct 4 was tied at 18 votes between Kathleen Ondrus and Ross Ball. The election had previously been decided in favor of Mr. Ball by drawing lots, as prescribed by state law. Today’s vote certification followed a mandated recount, which found no change in the vote count.

The board also set the times and locations for early voting for a special election Aug. 5 to decide a Springfield School District request for a 7.9-mill levy. Early voting will start July 8, and will be conducted at One Government Center during normal business hours, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. through the Friday before the election.

Three of the board members and Director Gina Kaczala are still waiting to hear whether they will be removed from their posts by Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted, who cited a history of dysfunction and neglect of duty when he issued a tentative decision to remove board members Ron Rothenbuhler, Jon Stainbrook, and Tony DeGidio and Ms. Kaczala. A spokesman for Mr. Husted said a decision was not expected today.

In an unusual display of partisan harmony, the board agreed to postpone action on an issue that threatened to result in a split vote.

A recommendation to refer an error in several Republican campaign finance reports to the Ohio Elections Commission was tabled after Mr. Stainbrook, the Lucas County Republican chairman, objected that the reports were not in error. The Republican Party paid for the fees for four candidates, in advance of the candidates designating their campaign treasurers. Mr. Stainbrook said the expenditures were the responsibility of the party, not the candidates.

On a motion from Democratic board member John Irish, the issue was tabled until the question could be reviewed by the board’s lawyer, assistant Lucas County prosecutor Kevin Pituch.

Contact Tom Troy: tomtroy@theblade.com or 419--724-6058 or an Twitter @TomFTroy.

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