The count of the last provisional ballots did not result in any changes to the winners or losers in the municipal elections held Nov. 7.
After a review on Wednesday, the county commission — acting as the county canvassing board — voted unanimously to certify the results. County Auditor Herry Heflin voted as proxy for Commissioner Becky Fast, who was not present.
What’s a canvass?
The canvass is the wrap-up of ballot counting that began Election Night.
Its purpose is to make final decisions on how or whether to count ballots that were completed but may have had technical problems.
Some examples include a signature on an incorrect line, an unsigned ballot, lack of photo identification or a vote at the wrong polling place.
Election officials sort the problematic ballots into categories, depending on the type of problem and ask the county commission to approve their recommendations to count, partially count or reject them.
The canvass determined if provisional ballots could count
This election, 1,050 provisional ballots were counted, the majority of which involved a voter who moved or changed names, or a voter who asked for an advance ballot but then showed up at the polls to vote instead.
Voters who forget to sign or provide ID could correct that by going to the Election Office before the canvass.
Another 192 ballots were partially counted. These were people who either got the wrong ballot through clerical error or showed up at the wrong polling place.
Overall, there were 343 ballots this year that were not counted, many of which were cast by people who were either not registered or sent ballots postmarked after Election Day.
Winners in two close races didn’t change
Two races were especially close as of the last unofficial total Friday, but the provisional ballot count did not affect who won either of them.
In Prairie Village, incumbent Ward 6 Councilmember Ian Graves still came out ahead of challenger Kelly Wyer, with 573 votes to Wyer’s 540. The previous count had a 36-vote gap between the two.
“I’m excited to get back to work and keep working for the people of Ward 6. I’m looking forward to working with everyone on the new council,” said Graves, who attended the canvass.
Roeland Park’s Ward 2 city council race also was basically unchanged from the last count, which had the contestants five votes apart. In that race, incumbent Benjamin Dickens ended up the winner with 181 votes to Haile Sims’s 175.
Write-in winners announced
Election Commissioner Fred Sherman also announced some write-in winners Wednesday, including:
- David McCullagh, who was elected Lake Quivira mayor
- Dan McCauley and Mike Pasley, elected Lake Quivira Council at-large
- Leslie Carto and Ramsey Mohsen, elected to Mission Woods City Council at-large
- John Weedman and Adam England, elected to Westwood Hills City Council at-large.
Total turnout was 26.74%, compared to 25.27% in 2021 and 17.35% in 2019.
Of the ballots cast, 62,137 were cast in person on Election Day, 28,409 ballots were cast early in person and and 30,135 cast by mail.
Roxie Hammill is a freelance journalist who reports frequently for the Post and other Kansas City area publications. You can reach her at email@example.com.