UTAH (ABC4) — Election offices in Utah may be nearly as busy today as they were on Election Day as the canvassing period comes to an end. Counties in Utah have two weeks to tally up the results of the election.
Up until today, reported results were just preliminary results. Counties will be certifying their results today and sending them to the state.
Under Utah law, election offices have two weeks after Election Day to tally up the results. There are several reasons for this.
One reason is to give an elections office time to count all its ballots.
“Any ballots that came in that were postmarked the day before the election, or people who were curing their signatures, or any other issues they may have with their ballot,” said Weber County Elections Director Lauren Shafer. “Maybe they forgot to put their ballot in the envelope, but they turned in their envelope.”
If something like that were to happen, all of the voters will be contacted prior to the certification of the results, according to Davis County Chief Deputy Clerk/Auditor Brian McKenzie.
He added that election officials will let them know what they can do about it to get their ballot counted and when they have to get done by.
“That’s what we spend the next two weeks figuring out so that everyone’s vote gets counted,” Shafer stated.
Elections offices worked day and night to contact any voter who has a ballot issue to allow them to resolve the problem.
“In fact, last night at 5:00, that was the final deadline. I had staff here, and we had three more that came in,” McKenzie told ABC4.
He explained that his staff helped those voters resolve their problems and stayed late to enter the final data before presenting it to the county board of canvassers on Tuesday morning.
At the end of the two weeks after Election Day, the board of canvassers for a county meets with the elections office just like Davis County did this morning to formally finalize the county’s results.
“Nothing is official until that canvas takes place,” McKenzie said.
“This is the end,” Shafer said. “We are done with the election. It will then basically all get sealed away and stored for 22 months in a secure location.”
McKenzie emphasized the magnitude of certifying the results by saying: “We really close things up and put it away and write it down in the history books.”