Final ballots could change outcome of Imagination Station levy

TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) - More than 8,000 votes will be counted in Lucas County. The provisional ballots could be the determining factor in the Imagination Station levy, which failed by about 1,000 votes earlier this month.

The final outcome of the levy will depend on 8,439 provisional ballots, set to be counted Tuesday.

The Lucas County Board of Elections has been meeting Tuesday to discuss which of the 10,237 provisional ballots are valid and which will be thrown away.

A total of 1,800 ballots have been ruled invalid. The top two reasons for ballots to become invalid include the person who registered was not a registered voter in Ohio and the voter filled out the ballot at the wrong precinct. Of those ballots tossed out, more than 900 were filled out by people not registered to vote in Ohio.

"Some of the provisional ballots I reviewed, the envelopes had no signature or no printed names," explained Ron Rothenbuhler, with the Lucas County Board of Elections.

The current count has the Imagination Station levy failing by more than 1,000 votes, but officials hope these ballots will push the levy to pass.

"56 to 57 percent of the vote needs to be in favor of Issue 26 for a successful passage," said Lori Hauser, with Imagination Station. "We're about 1,075 votes short from a positive outcome for Issue 26. So we're waiting anxiously to have those ballots counted."

Final results for the Imagination Station levy should be known on Monday. If the outcome does not change, Lucas County voters can expect another levy request next year.

"Our levy funds expire at the end of 2013, so we would be looking at another issue on the ballot in the fall of '13," said Hauser.

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