About 700 potential ballots still remain to be counted, most of them "vote-by-mail" ballots, before results of the Monterey Park's city election on Tuesday, March 3 can be certified.
In addition, city election officials must also wait until Friday to see if any vote-by-mail ballots are delivered by the U.S. Post Office. As required under a new state law, late arriving vote-by-mail ballots that are post marked with the Election Day date must be counted.
Preliminary results of Tuesday's balloting show Mitchell Ing and Teresa Real Sebastian, two incumbents, and newcomer Stephen Lam, elected to the five member city council. Fourth place finisher was incumbent Anthony Wong who trailed Lam by a slight percentage.
Of the ballots remaining, an estimated 500 are vote-by-mail ballots brought in by voters to the city's polling places. About another 200 provisional ballots were cast in the election at polling places. Election officials have reported that it is normal to have residual vote-by-mail ballots that must be counted before election results are certified.
A provisional ballot is cast when a voter's name cannot be found in the official voting roster, or they were listed as "vote by mail" voters, but did not have a vote-by-mail ballot to return. The rule prevents voters from accidentially voting twice. Before the envelopes ar opened, signatures on the outside of the vote-by-mail and provisional envelopes are double checked by election clerks using county voter registration records.
There was no projected date for certification of election results but typically, the election report will be filed before the next regular city council meeting on March 18.