California: County leaders settle dispute over charges for recounting ballots of Riverbank election | Modesto Bee

October 20, 2013

Stanislaus County leaders have dismissed the balance owed for the recount of the Riverbank mayoral election of 2012. County officials entered an agreement last month with former mayor Virginia Madueño to dismiss a remaining balance of $3,250, with neither side admitting fault. After Madueño lost by 53 votes to Richard O’Brien last year, one of her supporters asked for the Dec. 10 recount, which was stopped after five hours because the results were not changing. Madueño was stunned when county elections sent her campaign an invoice six weeks later showing a $7,817 balance owed in addition to the $2,400 deposit paid the day of the recount. The Registrar of Voters’ total charges for counting about 500 ballots was $10,217, or $20 per ballot. The person who requests a recount is expected to pay for it, but the invoiced costs tend to vary from county to county in California. And critics have suggested that county registrars arbitrarily impose recount charges.