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Judge orders county to open machines to tally leftover votes  (NJ)

ANDREW KITCHENMAN   The Times Of Trenton   08 November 2007

TRENTON While all of the races in this year's elections in Mercer County appear to be resolved, a few votes remain to be counted.

The final results were not at hand yesterday because the results for seven voting machines were not available.
Poll workers failed to bring the cartridges from the seven machines to the county clerk's office after polls closed Tuesday.

Superior Court Judge Darlene Pereksta issued an order yesterday allowing the county to open the cartridges, which remained at the machines at the polling places yesterday. They will be brought to the county's voting-machine warehouse on Johnston Avenue in Trenton, where the cartridges will be opened today, officials said.

Of the machines whose votes were not counted, two had been replaced with other machines be cause they were malfunctioning, one was repaired during the day and four may not have been used at all, county Superintendent of Elections Bettye Monroe said.

While poll workers are told to take the cartridges from all machines at the end of the day, some older poll workers remain unfamiliar with all of the steps, officials said.

Officials said the new results are unlikely to change the results in any local election.

In addition to those from the seven machines, the Mercer County Board of Elections must count the provisional ballots. Roughly 300 provisional ballots were filed, but it is not known how many of those will count. The board will open the ballots tomor row.

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