Consolidated Election Woes

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Updated: Wed, 18 Sep 2013 05:45:11 EST

Busy night for Bibb County Board of Election workers after early glitches and late tallies made the difference between a victory and defeat for some political hopefuls.

Around 10:30 p.m. mayoral candidate Robert Reichert and his supporters believed it was a victory after the Board of Elections announced all 40 precincts reported the vote tally. However the celebration was short lived. Just before 11 p.m it was announced 8,000 absentee and early votes had not been counted yet.

"They just happened to grab those last,” elections supervisor Jeanetta Watson said. “I'll just be honest, they were probably in there, as the girl was bringing the memory cards in, just putting them in the bin. They're just picking up the first set. And they may have been in the front and they're just picking up the first set they got."

However, that wasn't the only issue Watson and her team to contend with after the polls closed at 7 p.m. It took an hour and a half for the first numbers to come in due to a glitch in the tabulating system.    

"It's electronic, sometimes it gets jammed up just like if you're on the internet surfing, the web and you have to reboot, well we had to reboot 25 units out."

The unofficial report states out of 81,348 registered voters, 36.036 cast ballots. Roughly 44 percent which Watson terms as "good" for an election of this type.    

"We had a couple of kinks at a couple of precincts with some splits and with some things that should've been corrected and for some reason they were not, other than that I think it went very well," she said.

The official report will be revealed by week's end once provisional votes are counted. As for Reichert, the absentee ballots changed the vote results, meaning he now faces a run-off election with former Macon mayor, C Jack Ellis to determine who will ultimately lead the new government, set to start the beginning of next year.

The run-off date is October 15 and even if you didn't vote Tuesday, anyone who registered for this election by the cutoff date in August can still cast their ballot on that date.

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