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A large number of write-in votes in some Berks races makes the results unclear

It’s not always possible to tell which candidates won their races on election night, or even sometimes the next morning.

That’s because not all votes get counted right away. Berks County elections officials reminded people of that on its election results website, noting that initial postings of totals don’t include all absentee and write-in ballots. And they don’t include any provisional ballots.

They also don’t include information on who received write-in votes.

The county website does list a total number of write-in votes cast for each race. But right now it’s unclear whose name voters jotted down on their ballots.

And this year, that could make a big difference in a handful of races.

Based on vote totals as of Wednesday morning, write-in votes could impact who won six school board and two township supervisor races. But whether write-in candidates will knock off candidates that appeared on the ballot won’t be clear for quite some time.

The process for claiming write-in votes doesn’t start right away. Most likely, sometime next week a five-day period during which candidates can claim write-in votes will begin.

After that period is over it should become more apparent who won.

In the meantime, here are some details on each of the contests that could be impacted by write-in votes.

Wilson School Board

The race for the Wilson School Board was uncontested on the ballot, with four candidates running for four spots. But an organized write-in campaign garnered quite a bit of support.

Write-in votes actually took home the top spot in the race with 11,133 votes. That was more than 6,500 more votes than the top candidate on the ballot and more than 7,000 more than the fifth-place finisher.

What that will mean for the makeup of the board is unclear. It will depend on how, exactly, those write-in votes are split among the write-in candidates.

As things stood Tuesday, the results of the race:

  • Write-in 11,133
  • Amy Kennedy (D/R) 4,549
  • Steph Kocher (D/R) 4,265
  • Sean McCrea (D/R) 4,125
  • Ed Case (D/R) 4,110

Brandywine Heights School Board

Like in Wilson, the race for the Brandywine Heights School Board was uncontested on the ballot. Four candidates were listed for four positions.

But write-in votes could shake things up.

There were 933 write-in votes cast, ranking them third. The fifth-place finisher, who could be knocked out by the write-ins, was behind write-ins by 110 votes.

As things stood Tuesday morning, the results of the race:

  • Kenneth L. Heffner (R) 1,602
  • Brian Hohenshilt (R) 1,511
  • Write-in 933
  • Matthew Reitenauer (G) 885
  • Zachary A. Stubits (L) 823

Kutztown School Board, region three

Tuesday’s ballot featured three candidates vying for two spots in region three of the Kutztown School Board.

Two of those candidates could miss out on earning those spots, depending on how the write-in votes pan out.

Write-ins were in the second position with 792 votes. That placed them ahead of the third-place candidate by 149 and in front of the fourth-place candidate by 233.

As things stood Tuesday morning, the results of the race:

  • Jason Koch (R) 1,039
  • Write-in 792
  • Karl H, Nolte III (D/R) 643
  • Charles N. Shurr Jr. (D) 559

Oley Valley School Board

There were six candidates vying for four seats on the Oley Valley School Board.

Three of them appear to have made the cut. But write-ins came in fourth with 1,677 votes, which was 100 more than the fifth-place finisher.

As things stood Tuesday morning, the results of the race:

  • Zachary D. Fatkin (R) 2,197
  • Aaron Keller (R) 2,144
  • Maria Bogdanova-Peifer (D/R) 1,963
  • Write-in 1,677
  • Dawn E. Zackon (D/R) 1,577
  • Ralph Richard (D) 1,440
  • Alison Paules-Rettew (D) 1,372

Schuylkill Valley School Board, at large

The race for three at-large seats on the Schuylkill Valley School Board was not contested on the ballot.

But all three candidates received fewer votes than the 2,328 write-in votes cast. That number was more than 1,000 more than the candidate currently in fourth place.

As things stood Tuesday morning, the results of the race:

  • Write-in 2,328
  • Linda R. Lash (D/R) 1,927
  • Nicoleen M. Kleffel (D/R) 1,898
  • Bryan O-Donnell (D/R) 1,294

Tulpehocken School Board, region three

Write-in votes could knock off one of the two candidates running for the Tulpehocken School Board in region three.

The race was uncontested on the ballot, with two candidates and two spots on the board.

But write-in votes placed second with 356 votes. That was 83 more than one of the two candidates received.

As things stood Tuesday morning, the results of the race:

  • Carl R. Kauffman III (R) 422
  • Write-in 356
  • Oscar J. Manbeck (D/R) 273

Centre Township supervisor

There were two supervisor positions on the ballot, one for a six-year term and one for a four-year term.

Both had the same candidate running unopposed. But the initial results for both races have that candidate getting fewer votes than the number of write-votes that were cast.

As things stood Tuesday morning, the results of the race for the four-year seat:

  • Write-in 535
  • Timothy J. Lehner (D/R) 451

And the results for the six-year seat:

  • Write-in 530
  • Timothy J. Lehner (D/R) 462

Source: Berkshire mont

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