Canvassing the Vote

Belle Fourche News

By Betty Bruner

BELLE FOURCHE-The regular Butte County Commission meeting was rescheduled for Friday to accommodate the Primary Election held on Tuesday, June 4. The agenda was fairly light with much of the business consisting of canvassing the Primary Election votes.

Following a presentation by Bruce Hintz from Legislative Audit which showed a “clean audit” for the 2022 year (the last year Auditor Elaine Jensen was auditor) the votes were canvassed. 

As Vice Chair Karrol Herman checked the final numbers in the newly unsealed poll books, numbers were confirmed by Commissioners Frank Walton, Chad Erk, and Stan Harms. Auditor Annie Capp sat in for Chair James Ager who was unable to make the Friday meeting. The canvassing took approximately 45 minutes and ended with all votes accounted for. 

There is the possibility of a recount in District 4 between Sue Broadhurst and Terry Batterman with a one vote difference. The process involves Broadhurst, who received one vote less than Batterman, filing her desire for a recount with the Butte County Auditor, then that petition being filed with the State, coming back to the county auditor and a recount happens. The process may take weeks to complete, but Broadhurst said she would file Friday after the meeting so that it would begin quickly.

There was a 26% turnout of voters for Butte County this year, down from 39% in 2022. The state had a 17% turnout.

During Public Comment, Sue Broadhurst brought several ideas to the commissioners. She again asked that something be done concerning the audio portion of the meetings. Broadhurst pointed out that several people had mentioned to her that they could not hear everything that was being said. Broadhurst also noted that she didn’t think the “taxpayers should pay” for the gifts given to administrative assistants on Administrative Assistant Day. The new county website is up and running, but there were several errors according to Broadhurst. Capp said that when they moved information from the old site to the new site several items did not transfer. They are aware and working on the problems.

Calvin Fickbohm informed the commissioners that were problems with radios that many of the First Responders were using and was asking that they look into it and get someone to work on it.

“There are a lot of First Responders in our area,” he said.

Chief Deputy Jason March explained that the tower at Castle Rock had been extended, but that did not completely solve the problem. The issue is being investigated.

There are double standards between the county commissioners and Planning Commission, according to Rick McCartney. There have been several times that the philosophy of the two entities have not coincided.  He also asked how poll workers were vetted and wondered if the commissioners had seen who was chosen. McCartney would like to see term limits put on board members.

Part of the answer to the sign riddle was found by a local resident. Several signs were found in a culvert. At least 17chevron signs were found preventing water flow. According to Highway Superintendent Dwayne Heidrich, there are probably more to uncover in the area.

On a special note, the Butte County Sheriff’s Department has been named as BH Roundup Parade Marshals for 2024.

Canvass: The Butte County Commissioners canvassed the votes from Tuesday’s Primary Election. From the left are County Auditor Annie Capp, Vice Chair Karrol Herman, Commissioner Frank Walton, Commissioner Chad Erk, and Commissioner Stan Harms. Bruner Photo