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Onondaga County ballot count on hold after coronavirus exposure

Tom Magnarelli
WRVO News (file photo)
Absentee ballots are checked Thursday at the Onondaga County Board of Elections office in Syracuse

Onondaga County has suspended it’s absentee ballot count until sometime next week, after a Board of Elections worker tested positive for the coronavirus.

Democratic Elections Commissioner Dustin Czarny said Friday the worker has not been at the BoE office since November 5, and has not participated in any absentee ballot count. He said the office was notified of the positive test around 11 a.m. Friday. At that point, the counting was stopped, the ballots secured, and all Board of Elections staff members were sent to the Central New York Regional Market to be tested for COVID-19.

Officials estimate around 30,000 of the nearly 57,000 absentee ballots the county has received have been counted. Several races are still too close to call until the remaining ballots are counted, including the 50th State Senate District race between Democrat John Mannion and Republican Angi Renna.

Renna led Mannion after election night by about 7,000 votes, but as of today, Renna’s lead has shrunk to about 4,000. Renna’s attorney’s have objected to more than 500 ballots so far, for a variety of reasons.

New York state law says all elections must be certified by November 28.

Jason has served as WRVO's news director in some capacity since August 2017. As news director, Jason produces hourly newscasts, and helps direct local news coverage and special programming. Before that, Jason hosted Morning Edition on WRVO from 2009-2019. Jason came to WRVO in January of 2008 as a producer/reporter. Before that, he spent two years as an anchor/reporter at WSYR Radio in Syracuse.