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Wow! Cost of State Mandated Recount to Durham Co. Taxpayers

Durham, NC – The Durham County Board of Elections completed a state ordered recount of 94,000 ballots December 4 – December 5. A total of 67 vetted temporary employees worked 928.5 cumulative hours over the two day period to complete the recount by the state mandated deadline. The final costs are broken down per area as follows:

Full-time Employees Overtime $2,279.14
Part-time Employees Overtime $3,443.90
Temporary Employees $15,626.19
Public Relations Consultant $28,000.00
PrintElect $15,000.00
Security $2,204.96
Transcript Service $1,559.50
General Services $240.00
TOTAL COST $68,353.69

On Dec. 1st, the State Board of Elections voted 3-2 along party lines to order a machine recount of 90,000 votes in Durham County, backing a request from Republicans and Gov. Pat McCrory’s campaign.

The three Republicans on the board voted for the recount, saying that the late addition of the 90,000 votes to the statewide tally on election night constituted an “irregularity.” The two Democrats on the board opposed the recount, arguing that no evidence suggested any mistakes in counting Durham votes.

The roughly 90,000 votes under scrutiny in Durham were added to the statewide tally around 11:30 p.m. on election night. McCrory, who was seeking a second term, appeared to be leading statewide until those votes were added to the total; Democrat Roy Cooper, North Carolina’s attorney general, maintained his lead in the count the entire time.

Cooper’s campaign criticized the recount as a waste of money. “We are confident that this recount will confirm Roy Cooper’s election as governor of North Carolina,” campaign manager Trey Nix said in a news release. “It is wrong that Gov. McCrory continues to waste taxpayer money with false accusations and attempts to delay and that the Republican-controlled Board of Elections did not follow the law.”

Durham County Board of Elections officials said their recount of 94,000 votes proved once again that the results that they reported on election night were accurate.

“We’ve been run through the wringer on this, and now proven to everybody that there was no problem,” said Durham County Board of Elections Chairman Bill Brian. “We have now proven to them three or four times there was no problem.”

In the recount completed the afternoon of Dec. 5th, Attorney General Roy Cooper picked up six votes, while Gov. Pat McCrory’s total stayed the same. Republican McCrory conceded to Democrat Cooper on Dec. 5th as the recount wrapped up.

In summary, the total cost to the taxpayers of Durham County for the recount is $68,353.69.

The Board would like to thank Durham County Government and all the members of the Durham community who supported the Board and its staff during this laborious process.

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Phyllis Coley
Phyllis D. Coley is CEO/Publisher of Spectacular Magazine and Host of Spectacular Magazine Radio Show. With a B.A. in English from NCCU, the Durham native began her professional career as Promotions/Marketing Director for New York City’s WKTU-FM. While at the radio station, Coley discovered the rap group Kid ‘n Play and managed them for five years, guiding their music and movie careers to success. Moving back to Durham, Coley produced a nationally syndicated television show, The Electric Factory, while working as News Director for FOXY 107/104. In April 2002, recognizing a void in highlighting the achievements of African Americans, she started her own business publishing ACE Magazine. Coley launched Spectacular Magazine in November 2004. Recognizing the lack of pertinent and truthful information, Coley began Spectacular Magazine Radio Show in March 2009. Coley is the organizer of Durham's Annual MLK/Black History Month Parade and the Annual North Carolina Juneteenth Celebration. She currently serves on Central Children’s Home Board of Directors, Raleigh Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Advisors, as Immediate Past Secretary of the Durham Rotary Club Board of Directors and is one of the founding members of the Triangle United Way’s African American Leadership Initiative.

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