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Mohave County Board of Supervisors rejects its own plan to hand count 2024 ballots

The Mohave County Board of Supervisors has struck down a plan to hand count all ballots cast in the 2024 election cycle.

The board had previously directed the county’s election director to draft a plan.

After doing just that, he presented it to the board on Tuesday, showing it would cost well over $1 million to implement. 

Board chair Travis Lingenfelter said that is money the county does not have.

“The first thing that we have to do in Mohave County in good conscience is to balance the budget. You can’t talk about any other spending when you have $18 to $20 million deficit. I mean that’s irresponsible," Lingenfelter said. 

Deputy County Attorney Ryan Esplin told the board that a hand count would likely invite litigation.

"We would need to follow what is laid out by statute. And if it meets the requirements laid out by statute, then we should use the machines," Esplin said. 

The motion to adopt the hand count plan was rejected on a 3-2 vote.

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Greg Hahne started as a news intern at KJZZ in 2020 and returned as a field correspondent in 2021. He learned his love for radio by joining Arizona State University's Blaze Radio, where he worked on the production team.