|Reichert to be new commissioner|
|May 30, 2014 Jerry Purvis|
It took almost three weeks to determine a winner, but Mark Reichert of rural Minatare has officially been named as the new Scotts Bluff County Commissioner for District 1 on the Republican ticket.
It was a four-person race for the seat going into the May 13 primary, and when the votes were counted, Reichert led challenger and Gering businessman Chuck Cowan by five votes. And after the provisional ballots were also counted, both Reichert and Cowan picked up one vote each, with Reichert still leading by a 274 – 269 vote.
The margin was outside the one percent difference that would have triggered an automatic recount. So Cowan paid for the recount and was present the afternoon of May 29 when the elections board went through the ballots again. The board came up with the same numbers and Reichert was officially declared the winner.
Scotts Bluff County Election Commissioner Vera Dulaney was at the recount and said the county’s optical scanner system, in place since 1984, has served them very well.
“I’m confident the system we use for counting ballots is sound,” she said. “It’s been accurate over a number of years and I have complete faith in how it works.”
Because no Democrat filed to run for the position, Reichert will appear unopposed on the Nov. 4 general election ballot.
Reichert will be sworn into office in January 2015. He will replace current District 1 Commissioner Mike Marker, who chose not to seek re-election.