York County to break election ties

Greg Gross

Dan Kauffman will have history and maybe the luck of the draw on his side when York County officials break numerous write-in ties from the November election.

Kauffman received just one write-in vote for an unexpired two-year term on the Jefferson Borough Council. But so did Zank Thoman, according to the county's election office.

That race, along with more than two dozen others, will be settled in the tried, but true tie-breaking method of drawing lots from the famous Utz potato chip can at the county's administration building, 28 E. Market St., at noon on Monday.

"It hones in on the point that one vote can win," said Nikki Suchanic, head of the election office.

The election: Kauffman didn't give himself the lone vote he received. Instead, that vote came from his spouse. In fact, Kauffman, who works out of town, didn't even vote in the election because he had to leave early for work.

But, he had a feeling just one vote could lead to him becoming a councilman.

Jefferson is a pretty small town - population 737, according to census data - and an even fewer number of people typically vote - 100 in November, according to the county elections office.

"I knew it was a possibility," Kauffman said of one vote being enough to win, or at least tie.

He also knew from experience. Kauffman's father, the Rev. Earl Kauffman, was one of three candidates to tie in a race for a seat on the Cross Roads Borough council in the 1970s. The elder Kauffman ultimately won in a tie-breaker, he said.

Elsewhere: The largest tie happened in Jackson Township were eight people are vying to serve a two-year term as an auditor. Five people also tied for a four-year term on the Northeastern school board.

At least one write-in candidate caused an upset in the General Election. In Wrightsville, Michael Gromling beat incumbent Kathy Abel, whose name was on the ballot, by 8 votes.

And some write-in candidates won two races. In Mount Wolf, for example, Dennis Naylor received enough write-in votes to secure a four-year term on council, as well as a two-year term.

Since he won both races, Naylor will get to pick how long he will serve.

"Whichever one is vacant will be filled by the council," Suchanic said.

— Reach Greg Gross at ggross@yorkdispatch.com.