The votes in the race for the 42nd district’s second representative will be recounted if tallies in the contest hold until the elections are certified next week.
Lynden business owner and Republican Vincent Buys holds a 177-vote lead over incumbent Democrat Kelli Linville in the race for the representative position, as of Friday, November 12. So far, Buys has secured 50.1 percent of the vote while Linville has received 49.8.
The secretary of state’s office estimates there are 150 ballots left to count in Whatcom County. With fewer than 2,000 votes and less than half a percent of the vote separating the candidates, the race is on track for a mandatory machine recount.
The recount will happen if the current tallies stay below the recount threshold when the elections are certified on Tuesday, November 23.
The next ballot count for Whatcom County will be released on Wednesday, November 17, at 5 p.m.
If Buys defeats Linville, the incumbent of 17 years, he will be among a trio of Republicans headed to Olympia to represent the 42nd district. State senator-elect Doug Ericksen defeated Pat Jerns by a wide margin, and former Blaine city councilmember representative-elect Jason Overstreet defeated Bellingham detective Al Jensen to secure the district’s first representative position.
All but two of the seven voting precincts that make up the Blaine, Birch Bay and Semiahmoo areas went for Buys in the 2010 election. Buys captured 52.8 percent of the vote in these areas while Linville received 47.2. Only downtown Blaine and Birch Point voted in favor of Linville.
In other local election news, the Northwest Parks and Recreation District 2 tax levy appears to be failing with 57.5 percent of the vote.
The levy needs a super majority of 60 percent or more to pass. The levy would have raised about $350,000 for the district annually for the next four years. It would have cost 10 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation; $20 annually in a $200,000 home. District 2 encompasses the same land as the Blaine school district with the exception of Point Roberts.