After polls closed in Tuesday’s spring election, results on the local races were posted that same night, with the regular disclaimer of “unofficial.”
Though these preliminary results represent the full count of votes, as with every election, they are not deemed official until they are canvassed and certified.
That process takes place the next week.
It serves as a way of ensuring results are accurate and free of any human error, Hudson District Executive Administrative Assistant Timothy Miner said. He is a part of the process each election year, along with the current school board clerk.
“This just provides the second, third and fourth, fifth or sixth set of eyes on the results to ensure that they are indeed accurate,” he said.
Canvassing is done at the local level, with a municipality checking its municipal office results and a school district checking if district office results. The county certifies results for county offices, as well as state, federal and referenda, according to County Clerk Cindy Campbell.
At each level, the clerk and two accompanying electors make up a board of canvass that verifies the number of voters matches the numbers of ballots. At the county level, Campbell reviews documents from each municipality to ensure they are complete and explain any incidents that occurred at the polling place on election day.
This all takes place the week following the election. State statute requires the canvassing to begin by 9 a.m. the Tuesday after the election.
The process is open to the public, and noticed as a public meeting.
Once the review is complete, the results are certified and official.