By Keith Eddings
UPDATE: The Board of Registrars meeting is now over. Mayor William Lantigua picked up 11 votes. Mayor elect Daniel Rivera picked up eight. Now 57 votes separate the two.
The election is not over yet. There are absentee ballots from overseas to count.
More on this story coming later at eagletribune.com and in tomorrow's Eagle-Tribune.
LAWRENCE — The process of reviewing provisional ballots from Tuesday's cast mayoral election got a late start this evening.
Just 60 votes separate Mayor William Lantigua and challenger City Councilor Daniel Rivera from the more than 15,000 ballots cast Tuesday night.
The Board of Registrars was supposed to begin at 4 p.m., but didn't get started until almost 5 p.m.
The board members inexplicably found two paper ballots on top of a cabinet in their office, and did not know why they were there or where they had come from.
The board must decide which of the 54 still-uncounted provisional ballots to count toward the final tally.
The registrars will review affidavits attached to the ballots in which voters affirmed they were registered to vote even though their names were not on the rolls.
Although the registrars won’t see the ballots, the affidavits they’ll examine will contain suggestions about how the ballots were cast.
The uncounted provisional ballots aren’t enough to undo Rivera’s 60-vote margin over Lantigua. But they could be a first step toward that goal for the mayor.
Rivera was at the office to oversee the count. Lantigua did not attend.