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Mayoral Race to be Decided by Dice Roll

Mayoral Race to be Decided by Dice Roll

Posted - Nov. 14, 2003 at 4:39 p.m.



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Keith McCord ReportingThe town of Washington Terrace will find out tonight who's going to be the mayor. What's that you say? Election Day was November 4th? You're right. But, after the votes were counted, there was a tie. So tonight it'll be settled with the throw of a pair of dice. High number wins and the new mayor will take office in January

Welcome to politics, Washington Terrace style. Not a big place; the Ogden suburb has a population of about 8500; it's only three square miles in size.

The current mayor is Mark Allen. On Election Day he went up against challenger Robert Garside.

Mark Allen, Mayor, Washington Terrace: “So about a quarter of ten that evening, the votes came out and it was 716-716."

Robert Garside, Challenger: "And they said 716 to 716... Holy moly. Are you sure?"

But not all the ballots were in. The following day, after 14 additional ballots were certified because the voters changed addresses, Garside took a two vote lead.

Robert Garside, Challenger: "Marks' been in there for four years, and it's tough to beat the incumbent. So I was happy that people came out and supported me."

But he wasn't the winner yet-- there were still two absentee ballots in the mail. When they came in, they both went to Allen. Tied again at 724!

State election laws say in the event of a tie vote, candidates can choose various methods to settle it. Coin flips and drawing straws are often done, but this time the candidates wanted to literally hold their fate in their own hands. So City Recorder Shari Peterson went out and bought two packages of dice!

For the candidates it's been an up and down ride for the past 10 days. Tonight, once and for all, it'll be settled!

One rule is they have to toss the dice a certain distance and the dice have to stay on the tabletop. If one falls off, they both toss again. And you thought the Bush-Gore race in Florida was wild.

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