Ballot Recount Friday on Narrowly Defeated $4M Land Deal

Ridgefield Registrars have called a recount for the proposed land sale in Tuesday's referendum, which failed by six votes.

With the margin of votes so close in Tuesday’s referendum on the proposed $4 million land deal, the Registrars of Voters, by town charter, have scheduled a recount for Friday morning to verify the machine results.

The recount, which is open to the public, will begin at 8:30 a.m. in the conference room on the lower level of Town Hall.

Voters denied the land deal Tuesday — which would have sold 9.858 acres of town-owned land on Sunset Lane to developers Toll Brothers Inc. — 961-967, a margin of six votes.

By charter, the town must conduct a recount if the margin is less than 0.5 percent of votes cast on that question. The six-vote margin is only 0.31 percent of the 1,928 votes cast on question 8.

Teams of election officials will look at every ballot to determine if any votes might have been miscounted. (They will only be looking at votes on the property sale question, not the seven spending requests.)

If the ballot is clearly marked, it will be run through the machine and counted again. If an oval is not fully filled in or a voter mismarked the ballot and clearly intended to vote one way, the vote will be counted manually.

The entire process should only take a couple hours, according to Democratic Registrar Cynthia Bruno, who based the assessment on previous recounts with similar sized turnout.
oldtimer May 15, 2014 at 04:18 PM
If things progress as usual, a re-vote will go on until the desired outcome is achieved.
Aaron Boyd May 16, 2014 at 10:52 AM
UPDATE: Recount upholds the failure, increasing the margin by one vote. Official tally on the land deal is 961-968.
Bob Cascella May 16, 2014 at 01:54 PM
The defeat of the Toll Brother’s purchase of 10 acres of the former Schlumberger property gives our community time to take a deep breath and consider all of the options for the property. While we would all like to recoup the tax dollars spent on the initial land purchase there is far more at stake here. The property is located in the heart of the community and great care should be used in exploring the highest and best use, not just a fast buck. One hopes the Board of Selectmen would be open to forming a temporary committee to explore the next direction the town takes. The makeup of the committee could include a representative from the League of Women Voters, a real estate developer, an attorney, a real estate broker and two or three additional interested parties. Simply put, the Board of Selectmen would charge the committee with preparing a plan for presentation to the Selectmen and ultimately the community for approval. There is ample time for this to take place and another vote held this November on Election Day. This will allow the Selectmen to get back to overseeing the town; alternative directions for the property explored, and as this is a Gubernatorial election year, higher voter turnout than the referendum.


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