Absentee votes counted in Homer, borough elections

With all of the absentee and questioned ballots counted in Kenai Peninsula Borough elections, Mike Navarre has emerged as the winner of the race for Kenai Peninsula Borough mayor, according to the borough’s unofficial results.

In Homer, after the city canvass board reviewed absentee and other ballots on Oct. 10, there was no change in election day results, with Mayor Beth Wythe and David Lewis winning re-election and Catriona Lowe winning election to the Homer City Council. 

The KPB Canvass Board on Monday announced that it had worked through the weekend to review the remaining 1,832 absentee and questioned ballots. Navarre garnered 1,055 of the votes, or just more than 57 percent of the total, challenger Tom Bearup got nearly 34 percent of the votes and the remaining 8 percent went to Carrol Martin.

On Oct. 7, Navarre had 53 percent of the votes and needed to maintain that lead or better to avoid a runoff.

Absentee voters also swayed the results of an advisory vote on an animal rescue program in the unincorporated parts of the borough.

Voters were asked if they’d like to see animal control in unincorporated parts of the borough and, additionally, if they’d like to see a raise in the mill rate to pay for the program.

Election day voters declined both, however when the absentee votes were tallied, the “yes” votes outnumbered the “no” votes by five, bringing the total to 50.04 percent yes and 49.96 percent no.

Voters still did not want to raise property taxes to pay for the service.

In the Homer Proposition question asking voters if they wanted to approve a Home Rule Charter Commission, the no votes gained slightly, 604 to 502 yes votes, or 55 percent to 44 percent.

The Homer City Council certified the election at its Monday meeting. 

Wythe, Lowe and Lewis will be sworn in at a special meeting at 6 p.m. Oct. 20, also in the Cowles Council Chambers.