1,500 Votes Discarded as Leader Holds 100 Vote Margin in California

The Contra Costa County Elections Department spent yesterday readjusting totals for a Tri-Valley area sewer district board election to exclude some 1, 500 ballots cast in San Ramon.

Residents of southern San Ramon from Interstate 680 to the eastern foothills were mistakenly asked to vote in a three-seat race for the Dublin San Ramon Services District.

Contra Costa's Local Agency Formation Commission removed the homes from the sewer district in March but left them within the boundaries of the Central Contra Costa Sanitary District, another sewer agency that had overlapped in the area.

The Contra Costa elections office was not notified of the change and had to verify it through the county assessor's office, said elections and registration manager Russ Fernandez.

The area comprises four precincts and about 2,600 voters. Election workers will recount all the votes on the 1,500 ballots, except for those made for Services District candidates.

Richard Rose and incumbent Tom McCormick were the two top vote-getters, according to unofficial final results. But the new totals may change who wins the third seat, which currently goes to Dan Scannell by a slim margin of about 100 votes over fourth-place finisher Tom Ford.

Incumbents Georgean Vonheeder-Leopold and James Kohnen, proponents of the Dublin-San Ramon district's plan to inject purified wastewater into the drinking water basin, were not re-elected.