Monday, July 28, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

GLOUCESTER COUNTY

Monroe Twp. councilman granted a recount

MONROE TWP. A Monroe Township councilman has been granted a recount of mail-in and provisional ballots from the Democratic primary this month after he lost his shot at reelection by six votes.

Superior Court Judge Kevin T. Smith, at a hearing Wednesday, approved Ronald Garbowski's request to have the ballots manually counted. Garbowski and his two running mates for the council - Paul Craig and Brent Salvadori - and their mayoral choice, Councilman Bill Sebastian Jr., lost to an opposing group of Democrats in the June 3 election: Bart McIlvaine, Cody Miller, Bob Heffner, and their mayoral candidate, Councilman Daniel Teefy.

Heffner garnered the least of the winning slate with 1,403 votes - a half-dozen more than Garbowski, who earned the highest among his group.

Three at-large seats are up on the seven-member council, as well as the mayor's post. The recount will be held Wednesday in county election offices in West Deptford.

Stephanie Salvatore, the county's superintendent of elections, said local races are known for thin thresholds. She said she did not believe the numbers would change but welcomed the recount.

"I think it's a healthy thing to have them," she said. "This gives people confidence in the system."

Garbowski on Thursday said voter errors in filling out the ballots could have discounted votes in his favor when being counted by the machines. "I'm going to be present and I'm going to look at every individual ballot," he said, adding that he does not plan to challenge the results if the recount yields the same outcome.

The Republican candidates - Scott Graham, Fred Straub III, and Joseph Wesner for council and their mayoral candidate, Samuel Miles - were uncontested. - Angelo Fichera

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