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Recount Information

A recount is held after the election results are certified as official. A recount can be required to be held automatically, can be requested by a candidate, or can be waived by a losing candidate if automatically required.

Automatic Recounts

Requirements for an Automatic Recount

  • More Than 500 Total Votes Cast
  • If a candidate failed to be nominated or elected by a margin of one percent or less of the votes received by the candidate who received the highest number of votes for the office, then an automatic recount will be held.
  • 500 Total Votes Or Less
  • If a candidate failed to be nominated or elected by a margin of two percent or less of the votes received by the candidate who received the highest number of votes for the office, then an automatic recount will be held.

Waiver

Any losing candidate may waive his or her right to a recount by filing a written statement with the Secretary of State, Election Commissioner, or County Clerk with whom he or she made his or her filing.

Notification to Candidates

  • The Secretary of State, Election Commissioner, or County Clerk shall notify all candidates whose ballots will be recounted of the time, date, and place of the recount.
  • Candidates whose ballots will be recounted may be present or be represented by an agent appointed by the candidate.

Schedule

  • Candidates Who Filed with the Secretary of State
  • Recounts for candidates who filed with the Secretary of State shall be made on the fifth Wednesday after the election and shall commence at 9 a.m.
  • Candidates Who Filed with the Election Commissioner
  • The recount shall be made as soon as possible after the adjournment of the county canvassing board, except that if a recount is required by the Secretary of State, the recounts may be conducted concurrently.

Procedure

The procedures for recounting ballots shall be the same as those used for the ballot counting on election day.

Tie Votes

If a recount results in the top vote getters for an office having the same number of votes, the Secretary of State or Election Commissioner will notify the candidates that a tie exists.

  • Primary Election
  • All Offices
  • The canvassing board will determine by lot which candidate will be nominated in the presence of the candidates or their representatives.
  • The Secretary of State or Election Commissioner will send the winning candidate his or her certificate of nomination.
  • General / Special Election
  • State Executive Department Offices
  • The winning candidate for the offices of Governor, Secretary of State, Auditor of Public Accounts, Attorney General, and State Treasurer will be chosen by the Legislature in the event of a tie.
  • All Other Offices
  • The canvassing board will determine by lot which candidate will be elected in the presence of the candidates or their representatives.
  • The Secretary of State or Election Commissioner will send the winning candidate his or her certificate of election.

Expenses

All expenses of an automatic recount shall be paid by the political subdivision(s) involved in the recount.

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Requested Recounts

Requirements

  • If a candidate failed to be nominated or elected by more than the margin required for an automatic recount, then he or she may submit a certified written request for a recount.
  • The request shall be filed with the Secretary of State, Election Commissioner, or County Clerk with whom he or she made his or her filing within 10 days of the election being certified by the County or State Canvassing Board.

Procedure

The procedures for recounting ballots shall be the same as those used for the ballot counting on election day.

Expenses

  • Prior to the recount, the Election Commissioner or County Clerk will estimate the cost associated with the recount.
  • If the race covers multiple counties, the individual Election Commissioners and / or County Clerks will estimate the costs and submit that information to the Secretary of State to compile.
  • The candidate requesting the recount shall pay the estimated costs to each county prior to the recount being scheduled.
  • If the actual cost of the recount is less than the estimated cost, the candidate may file a claim with the County Board for a refund of overpayment.
  • If the recount shows that the candidate did in fact win the nomination or election, the amount paid for the recount will be refunded to the candidate.
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Douglas County Election Commission  •  225 North 115th Street, Omaha 68154  •  Phone (402) 444 - VOTE (8683)  •  Fax (402) 444 - 4181
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