County certifies local election results

Five new MHUSD trustees to join board, two new council members

County election officials certified the results from the Nov. 6 election one month to the day, according to a Dec. 6 announcement from the Registrar of Voters.

The final local turnout for the general election totaled 625,425 ballots cast, representing 70.61 percent of registered Santa Clara County voters, according to county statistics.

The Registrar of Voters officially certifies the results once the canvass of the vote is completed in the 30 days following an election. During the canvass, all vote-by-mail, paper and electronic ballots cast at the Registrar of Voters’ office as well as at the early voting centers and all other polling places are added to the semi-official vote totals. Afterward, prior to certification, a 1 percent manual tally is conducted to confirm the accuracy of the machine-counted results.

“We are very encouraged by the turnout and applaud Santa Clara County voters for their historic level of participation,” said Registrar of Voters Shannon Bushey, who certified the results. “We believed turnout might be as high as 70 percent, and voters exceeded our expectations.”

None of the Morgan Hill Unified School District’s five trustee area races met the threshold to warrant an automatic recount. The closest of the five came in Trustee Area 2, where Morgan HIll Chamber of Commerce President John Horner edged executive Tara Bevington by 29 votes. A margin of 25 or fewer votes would have triggered a recount.

Horner is joined by other election winners Vanessa Sutter (TA5), Wendy Sullivan (TA1) and Carol Gittens (TA4), as well as Heather Orosco, who ran unopposed in TA3.

The five new MHUSD trustees were sworn prior to closed session for the Dec. 11 school board meeting. They were welcomed by current trustees Mary Patterson and Teresa Murillo—even though Murillo announced Dec. 7 she is resigning from her post with two years remaining. The remaining six board members were expected to decide later that same evening whether to appoint or hold an election for Murillo’s replacement. (That vote came after the Times print deadline.)

In the Trustee Area 7 seat for the Santa Clara County Board of Education, incumbent Claudia Rossi won a second term.

In the Trustee Area 3 race on the Gavilan Community College Joint District Board of Trustees, challenger Edwin Diaz was victorious and expected to be sworn in at that governing body’s Dec. 11 meeting. Incumbent Laura Perry ran unopposed in TA1, which covers the Morgan Hill area.

The registrar’s official certified results also include local races for Morgan Hill mayor and city council, which will place three new faces on the five-person elected council.  Rich Constantine, former council member for District B, will be the new Mayor of Morgan Hill, with about 47 percent of the votes cast in the Nov. 6 race.

Planning Commissioner Yvonne Martínez-Béltran will be the new council member for District B, winning over 52 percent of the vote.

In a tight race for District D, John McKay won the seat with 37 percent of the vote. Second-place finisher Julie Hutcheson received 36 percent of the votes in that race.

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