With only 273 votes between second and third place for two seats on the San Juan Capistrano City Council by the time all the precincts checked in, Patch will keep an eye on how the tallies change with the counting of the provisional ballots and absentee ballots dropped off at the polling places.
Each night at 5 p.m., the Orange County Registrar of Voters will update the counts of various elections.
Interestingly, Wednesday the distance between winning and not winning stayed exactly the same, 273 votes, even though both numbers climbed.
“We still have 260,000 ballots left to count,” said Neal Kelley, spokesman for the Registrar. “[W]e do not know how many are left in San Juan at the moment. … Because the universe is so large of ballots countywide, it will take some time to extract the data and attempt to estimate the total number of ballots left in a particular city or district.”
Former Mayor Roy Byrnes received the top nod with 4,810 votes. After serving in the 1970s, Byrnes will return to his post on the City Council nearly 40 years later.
Incumbent Sam Allevato won his third election with 4,057 votes or 21.9 percent of the ballots cast. Challenger Kim McCarthy, who ran as a slate with Byrnes, was behind him with 3,891 votes, or 21 percent.
Wednesday's numbers put Allevato with 4,283 votes, or 22.2 percent and McCarthy at 4,010 votes, or 20.8 percent.
However, McCarthy is not demanding a recount and has accepted her defeat.
“I will continue to work to hold the council majority accountable for the decisions they make that impact all our lives and to share that information with the residents,” she said.
McCarthy also takes a certain gratification that combined with Byrnes’ votes, her slate received 1,200 votes more than Allevato and running partner Ginny Kerr, a San Juan Planning Commissioner, she said.
"While the 'good-old boy' majority still retain the votes needed to continue to raise our water rates and increase our cost of living, at least we know that many more residents are paying attention to what's happening in our town," McCarthy said.