The challenge could delay certification of other races.
By VIRGINIA ROSS
NEW CASTLE, Pa. -- Charles H. Adamo, who was a candidate for Lawrence County sheriff, is challenging the results of the May primary that were released last week.
Adamo, who lost the Democratic nomination to Perry Quahliero by six votes, filed a petition for a recount Monday. Marlene Gabriel, county elections director, said Adamo specified he wants ballot boxes from 16 of the county's 106 precincts recounted. Any candidate wanting to challenge those results and file a petition for a recount had until 4 p.m. Monday to do so.
The cost for a recount is $102.50, plus a $50 bond for each box opened. Had there been no challenges, last week's results would have been certified as final, Gabriel said.
On June 7, the county return board finished its canvass of the May primary and presented the results to the county elections board. According to those results, vote tabulations changed slightly but the outcome of three top county races -- the sheriff, district attorney and common pleas court judge races -- remained the same. Gabriel said Adamo's challenge could hold up certification of the results of other races, but the elections board likely will seek a court order from a common pleas court judge to avoid that.
"We'll try to separate the races so we can certify the other results, otherwise it could take awhile to certify the results of the other races," she said. She added the county doesn't have time to delay certifying the common pleas judge race because the state has informed her it expects those results to be certified by June 24. The race for Democratic nomination for county sheriff has remained of interest since the May 17 primary because of the closeness of the race.
Every vote counts
Initially, Quahliero held the lead by nine votes. However, a recount of more than 700 ballots from Neshannock Township 7th precinct was conducted after it was discovered some 500 ballots, including at least 200 from Democrats, had been overlooked the night of the primary. After that recount, Quahliero remained the victor with a six-vote margin. Those results gave Quahliero and Adamo 3,536 and 3,530 votes, respectively. According to results released last week, Quahliero claimed a total of 3,538 votes and Adamo had 3,532 total votes. The Democratic nominee will face Republican nominee Thomas Wharry in November.
In the common pleas court judge race, the Republican and Democratic nominees remain John Hodge and Matthew Mangino, respectively. John Bongivengo is the Democratic nominee and George Freed is the Republican nominee for district attorney.