More than 30,000 votes were cast in the Nov. 5 Dayton school board race, but the margin for the last of three seats up for grabs currently stands at a single vote.
The final spot will be determined by a recount, but the tentative lead for that spot has switched hands, from Joe Lacey to Dion Sampson.
The Montgomery County Board of Elections on Tuesday certified results from the Nov. 5 election, adding in provisional ballots that were ruled valid and absentee ballots that were postmarked on time but arrived after election day.
FIRST RESULTS: Smith, Pickett elected to school board
Prior to those additions, Lacey was ahead of Sampson by 11 votes — 6,383 to 6,372. After the updates, Sampson leads Lacey by one vote — 6,468 to 6,467.
Any race where the margin is less than 0.5 percent goes to an automatic recount. This race easily qualifies and will be one of five recounts in Montgomery County.
Board of Elections Director Jan Kelly said just over 5 percent of the total votes cast will be recounted by hand at 8:15 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 4. The Board of Elections randomly selected the precincts to be recounted on Tuesday.
None of the six Montgomery County races that required a 5-percent recount in November 2018 or 2017 saw their vote totals change at all.
Lacey is an accountant who spent 12 years on Dayton’s school board before being voted out in 2017. Sampson is a former neighborhood school site coordinator in Dayton Public Schools now working as a charter school principal. Both have children attending DPS.
The first- and second-place finishers in the Dayton school board race have already been decided, as voters elected Will Smith and Gabriela Pickett to the board. The three new school board members will take office in January, joining incumbents William Harris, Jocelyn Rhynard, Mohamed al-Hamdani and Karen Wick-Gagnet.
Outgoing board members Robert Walker, Sheila Taylor and John McManus all decided not to run for re-election.
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