The three-member recount commission appointed last week by Starke Circuit Judge Kim Hall to review the votes cast in two recent General Election contests will meet this morning at the courthouse. They’re looking into the outcome of the fourth district county council race between Democrat Pam Stalbaum and Republican Don White. The Republican Party filed a recount petition on White’s behalf after Stalbaum eked out a two-vote victory in the race to succeed Democrat Marvin McLaughlin. Incumbent Railroad Township Trustee Roger Chaffins, Sr. also filed a petition for a recount after losing to Republican Mandy Thompson by three votes.
Since the fourth district includes Railroad and the four Wayne Township precincts, the judge named one three-member panel to tally votes in both contests. Members include Republican Marilyn Folkers, Democrat James A. Henriott and Joe Short as the electronic voting system mechanic. Each candidate affected by the recount can have one watcher present during their meeting. Members of the media are also able to attend, however the meeting is not open to the public.
All of the voting machines, tally sheets and voter lists pertaining to the recount will be secured in the courthouse safe until that meeting and will be placed back in storage after it is over.
The commission will issue a report to Judge Hall once its work is complete. He has until Dec. 20 to issue a ruling as to the outcome of both contests but can order more time should that be necessary.