Decisions by local election officials to recount all early votes cast before Nov. 6 will cost taxpayers $21,355, according to figures provided by the office of Supervisor of Elections Gertrude Walker. That expense includes at least $2,272 for sheriff’s deputies, who ordered spectators out of the Supervisor of Elections Office moments after A Nov. 11 recount, then stood watch over crowds of disgruntled partisans the following weekend.
The Sheriff’s Office Explorers program will be paid $1,400 for work that included physically moving boxes of ballots across the hall from the Supervisor of Elections office to a glass counting room inside the Orange Blossom Business Center. And $7,164 goes to poll workers and overtime for Walker’s staff. Walker said the expense of recounting ballots would come out of the budget for her office.
The recounts took place against a backdrop of closely contested races between Allen West and Patrick Murphy for the District 18 U.S. House seat; and Vince Gaskin and Linda Hudson for mayor of Fort Pierce.