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County Commission recount to take place Wednesday

Grand Forks County will begin recounting ballots in the County Commission race on Wednesday morning. "We will look at every single ballot for the judge's initials and voter intent," said County Auditor Debbie Nelson. "Every ballot will be counted...

Grand Forks County will begin recounting ballots in the County Commission race on Wednesday morning.

"We will look at every single ballot for the judge's initials and voter intent," said County Auditor Debbie Nelson. "Every ballot will be counted again by a machine. We will first do an example to make sure our machines are accurate, and then we'll count them all."

Nelson still was accepting absentee ballots postmarked by Nov. 5 and set aside ballots until Tuesday, she said, when the canvassing advisory board convened to finalize the results.

According to those counts, candidates Tom Falck and Kyle Kvamme were only 47 votes apart, or 0.09 percent of the vote.

The county will pay for a recount as long as there's a 0.5 percent difference between two candidates. Nelson said she didn't know Tuesday morning how much this recount will cost. Previously, a recount in 2010 for the state House seat in District 43 cost the state $291.20.

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This year is the first recount Nelson said she will lead relating to a county election-past recounts have only been conducted for local state and city races, like one for a Larimore municipal judge in 2014 and a recount in a primary earlier this year.

Current canvassing results also show a 35 vote difference between District 43 House candidates Matt Eidson and Ben Olson. As long as the candidates remain less than 0.5 percent apart, the state will pay for a recount. Candidates can demand a recount as long as they're less than 2 percent apart, but they have to pay for it on their own.

Nelson said she's still waiting on the state canvassing board to meet Nov. 19 before the county conducts a recount for District 43.

Most recounts Nelson has been familiar with don't have a change in outcome.

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