A recount conducted by the Franklin County Board of Elections has confirmed that voters narrowly re-elected Groveport Mayor Lance Westcamp.
The official recount, held on Nov. 30, shows Westcamp with 942 votes and challenger Dave Gale with 930.
After the results were announced, Westcamp and Gale shook hands and both acknowledged it was a "tough race."
"This is one of the greatest political victories for the town of Groveport because it was so competitive and because of the issues we faced and will continue to face," said Westcamp. "We’re moving forward."
Gale congratulated Westcamp.
"I want to thank those who supported me, especially my wife, who is my strongest supporter and best friend," said Gale. "I also want to thank those who voted for me and helped me through the process. Although it didn’t result in a win, it was a good showing."
When asked about any future political plans, Gale said, "Any future decisions will be made when we get there."
Gale said he filed the request for a recount because, "I wanted to leave no stone unturned. So many people supported me in the election and I didn’t want to let them down."
Gale had to pay $275 for the requested recount since the certified Election Day results of 943 votes for Westcamp and 930 for Gale did not fall within the percentage margin of difference required for an automatic recount.
Both candidates observed the recount at the board of elections offices in downtown Columbus, where the paper ballots were counted, and had representatives stationed at the board of elections warehouse on Alum Creek Drive to watch as the electronic voting machine tapes were recounted.
According to Ben Piscitelli, public information officer for the Franklin County Board of Elections, all the absentee ballots were counted by hand.
"Voting machine results were reviewed by hand initially by checking the machine’s paper tape to review voting in a single precinct," said Piscitelli. "If the recount total is within two votes of the original count, the remaining machine votes are recounted electronically. If the original count is off by more than two votes, we recount the entire race with a hand check of the paper tape."
Had the recount ended in a tie race, the winner would have been determined by a coin toss, said Piscitelli.