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407 uncounted election ballots found, results stand as is

More than 400 uncounted ballots from the Sacramento County November election were found last week, but none of the races have been affected, according to the registrar of voters.

The 407 ballots were from 92 precincts, and were found when the warehouse was being cleaned, said Sacramento County Elections Registrar of Voters Jill Lavine. They were placed in the wrong colored bag, she said, by an inspector the night of the election.

"We checked all the contests that could have been affected, and there’s not enough to change any of the results," Lavine said. "None of the results change, the results stand certified as is."

This certainly isn’t common, however. "I’ve been the registrar for 10 years and this has never happened," Lavine said. "I’ve been in elections for 25 and it hasn’t happened here."

The bag of pink ballots was found Feb. 7, in a red bag that was labeled "van supplies," Lavine said. The inspector apparently ran out of room in her pink bag, and instead of grabbing an overflow bag, placed the ballots in a red supply van without indicating its contents, she said.

"By the time it got back, the red bags went one way, and the pink went another," Lavine said. "We had no indication ballots were in the bag until we went to clean supplies."

The elections office has contacted the Sacramento County legal counsel, as well as the secretary of state legal counsel, Lavine said. The employee responsible for the misplaced bag hasn’t been formally disciplined, she said.  

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