BELMAR, NJ — Republican newcomer Joshua Vallario narrowly defeated Democratic incumbent Thomas W. Brennan by one vote in the race for borough council, after county election officials today added 14 provisional ballots to the tally.
The official vote count now stands at 993 for Vallario, including eight of those votes, and 992 for Brennan who received six more votes, according to a Monmouth County Clerk’s Office spokesperson. Two provisional ballots were not added to the final tally by the Monmouth County Board of Elections on November 13.
“I’m the one-vote wonder in Belmar,” Vallario said in a Facebook video, referring to the seesaw battle between the candidates since the November 7 election for the three-year seat on the governing body.
Voters who went to the polls had Vallario leading Brennan 895 to 838 votes. But when the 238 mail-in votes were added in later than night, Brennan was ahead by one vote — 986 to 985 — leaving the election’s results in abeyance until the verified provisional ballots were officially counted in.
“I am super excited to begin the true, honest and fair work on benefit of the residents to help correct issues we are facing in this town,” Vallario said, who thanked his opponent for his “continued support of this town. Your years of volunteering are extremely valuable. And I look forward to working with you on future projects.”
Meanwhile, Brennan said he will be asking for a recount. “We feel there are valid votes that have not been counted,” he said, adding that more details will follow as soon as they become available.
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