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42,000 outstanding ballots remain to be counted in L.A. City Council race

March 15, 2011 |  7:00 am

Los Angeles election officials say they will begin the process of tallying around 42,000 uncounted provisional and vote-by-mail ballots Tuesday.

Watching the results closely will be Los Angeles City Councilman Bernard C. Parks and his main challenger in the March 8 election, Forescee Hogan-Rowles. Theirs was the only City Council contest with results close enough to potentially turn on the absentees.

Parks declared victory Wednesday after unofficial tallies showed him avoiding a runoff by less than 1 percentage point.  

But Hogan-Rowles did not concede, saying she would wait until the outstanding provisional and absentee ballots are counted to decide what to do next.

The official results must be released by March 29, according to Maria Garcia, who works in the city's elections division.

Garcia said election workers would spend this week inspecting and counting about 9,000 provisional ballots and then would tackle the remaining 33,000 vote-by-mail ballots.

She could not say how many of those ballots were cast in the constested 8th District, which covers parts of South Los Angeles. Last week Steve Barkan, Hogan-Rowles' campaign consultant, said he believed that there were still between 1,800 and 3,000 provisional and vote-by-mail ballots to be counted.

Parks, a former Los Angeles police chief who was heavily opposed by organized labor, had to win more than 50% of the vote to declare outright victory. Preliminary results showed him with 50.89% (7,934 votes), followed by Hogan-Rowles with 43.99% (6,858 votes) and Jabari Jumaane with 5.11% (797).


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-- Kate Linthicum from Los Angeles City Hall