Ballots for Whitehorse city council candidates are being recounted after only two votes separated sixth from seventh place in the unofficial results of Thursday's municipal election.

The top six finishing candidates are elected to city council. There were 22 candidates on the ballot.


Dan Curtis was elected mayor of Whitehorse with a wide lead in Thursday's municipal election. Votes for city councillors are being recounted as only two votes separated sixth from seventh place in the unofficial results. (CBC)

In the unofficial results, Mike Gladish finished sixth with 1534 votes, and Roslyn Woodcock finished seventh with 1532 votes. Forty-one ballots were rejected.

Returning officer Norma Felker said the municipal act requires a recount be done.

"You never know what’s going to happen with a recount, because when you’ve got that many names on a ballot, it’s easy for mistakes to be made, especially under the time pressure they have," she said.

Anxious residents had a long wait for the election results to come in.

It was almost two hours after the polls closed before the first results began to trickle in.

Outgoing Whitehorse Mayor Bev Buckway attributed the delay to high voter turnout due to "no competition with other elections and all the candidates are bringing out their friends and family so there’s more voters."

Another reason was the votes are manually counted. Felker said the city may look at a mechanical or electronic counting system for future elections.

"We’ll definitely investigate. We’ve looked at automated systems in the past, but they’ve been beyond our budget."

Felker said automated systems are becoming more common and they may be more affordable by the time the next municipal election rolls around.

She said the results would probably be available quicker with an automated system, but if there were a recount, ballots would still have to be counted manually.

Felker said the results of the recount will be announced on Monday.