PEORIA, AZ - Arizona residents voting in the Peoria City Council primary election were alerted this week to an error on the ballot: a candidate's name was missing.
About 8,500 replacement ballots were mailed out Monday, at an estimated cost of $15,000 to taxpayers , said Director of Elections Karen Osborne.
The Maricopa County Board of Elections announced Wednesday that due to a mistake made by the print vendor, the original ballot was re-mailed out, instead of the corrected ballot.
"We are working closely with the City of Peoria to resolve this as quickly as possible and determine what course of action to take next," the press release said. "We regret this unfortunate event, and offer our sincere apologies to the candidates in this race and the voters in this district for any confusion and inconvenience."
Osborne said the correct ballot was provided to the printing company, however, somehow the incorrect ballot was the one printed and mailed out. She said while the original error cost $15,000, this second mistake is on the print company. She said taxpayers and the Board of Elections will not be picking up the bill.
Dr. Ken Krieger, who is running for a seat on the Peoria City Council, said he received a call from a rival candidate this week informing him that his name wasn't listed on the original ballot, despite being included in the official voter guide.
He was shocked then. However, to find out that he wasn't on the replacement ballot, "My neighbor came by and showed me the ballot. And I thought he reprinted it again and it was a joke."
Osborne said, "While I care very much about the candidates, I care more about the voters. And I want to make sure that they have as clear as information as we can possibly get them."
"One of my campaign slogans was 'promises made, promises kept.' But now it may be, 'I may be ballotless but I'm not hopeless,'" he said.
The Peoria City Council will hold a special emergency meeting Thursday at 11 a.m. to discuss the next steps. Maricopa County has reportedly provided the council with several options, including moving the city election to the November general ballot.
The council hopes to have a decision as soon as possible.
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