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Riverside County ordered to tally thousands of uncounted mail-in primary election ballots

July 9, 2010 | 12:06 pm

A Superior Court judge on Friday ordered Riverside County to tally more than 12,500 main-in ballots that arrived a day after the polls closed in the June 8 primary election.

With several close races hanging in the balance, the local Democratic Central Committee and three voters filed a lawsuit to force the Riverside County Registrar of Voters to count the ballots.

The uncounted mail-in ballots had been sent to a post office in Moreno Valley, where the registrar has never collected mail. They were collected on June 9 after postal officials forwarded them to a post office in Riverside, where the registrar's staff picks up mail daily.

County elections officials will tally those ballots by the end of Saturday and certify the election results shortly thereafter, according to statement released by the county. Riverside County officials had postponed certification of the June 8 primary election results until they decided how to handle the matter.

"We're pleased with the decision," Riverside County Executive Officer Bill Luna said in a statement. "With the judge's ruling we will count the ballots and move quickly to certify the election."

-- Phil Willon