Fire District 23′s levy appears to have passed by the slimmest of margins – one vote.
The Pierce County elections department reported this week that 100 percent of the general-election ballots returned by voters in the district have been counted, and the levy has 306 votes in its favor and 305 against it.
A simple majority will decide whether the measure passes or fails.
Excluded from the results, which will become official when they’re formally certified by election officials Nov. 27, are 34 ballots returned by voters who didn’t vote on the levy.
Despite the razor-thin difference in the voting, a recount might not occur. Under state election laws, recounts are mandatory only when candidates for an office finish close enough to trigger one. Ballot measures don’t have that requirement.
According to Pierce County’s elections department, 646 of the 814 ballots that were sent to voters in the district were returned for counting.
Proposition 1 calls for a levy on property taxes to fund fire protection and emergency medical services in the Ashford, Elbe and Alder areas the district serves. The proposal was rejected in the primary election in August by five votes (163 to 158) in a much smaller voter turnout. The district commissioners put the measure back on the ballot for the general election.