Election 2022: Vote count continues in Santa Cruz County


Just 53 votes are left to be tallied countywide after Tuesday’s vote count, with another report expected Tuesday, Dec. 6, when the results of the election are expected to be certified. Just one race remains to be called, that for the Capitola City Council.

Election 2022: Santa Cruz County

The Santa Cruz County Clerk’s office added 105 ballots to its vote count Tuesday. Some 105,836 votes have now been counted, representing more than 99% of total ballots.

Just 53 ballots remain to be counted, with another report expected Tuesday, Dec. 6, when the results of the election are expected to be certified. An estimated 105,889 voters cast ballots in this election out of 166,837 registered voters, or a turnout rate of around 63.5%.

What’s the outstanding vote composed of?

  • 15 vote-by-mail ballots.
  • 38 same-day-registration ballots.

Almost all contests now look to be decided:

Santa Cruz County

City of Santa Cruz

  • Fred Keeley will become the first four-year mayor for the city of Santa Cruz, up by more than 40 percentage points, getting 70% of the vote so far.
  • Scott Newsome will represent Santa Cruz City Council District 4. Newsome had garnered more than 50% of the votes in the district as of Tuesday, well ahead of runner-up Hector Marin, with 35%.
  • Renée Golder, with 58% of the vote, will represent Santa Cruz City Council District 6. Challenger Sean Maxwell had earned 42% of the vote as of Tuesday.
  • Measures K and L, bonds for school improvements, have both passed. K — for high schools — earned 67% of the vote. L — for elementary schools — had gained 71% of the vote. Each needs 55% to pass.
  • Measure N, the initiative that would have taxed “empty homes,” failed by 8 points, gaining 46% of the vote.
  • The subject of so much contention — Measure O — has failed. The no vote holds a 19-point lead over yes, with 60% of the vote.
  • Measure P, an increase in the City of Santa Cruz transient occupancy tax, passed with 81% yes votes.

City of Watsonville

  • Incumbent Ari Parker won Watsonville’s lone contested city council seat, District 7, with 54% of the vote to 45% for former council member Nancy Bilicich.
  • On the Watsonville boundary measures, Measure Q — to maintain the city’s boundaries as they are — won over Measure S by double digits. If both passed, the one with the greater number of votes would go forward. Q claims 68% yes while S now has roughly 50% of the vote.

Soquel Creek Water District

  • The slate of three incumbent Soquel Water Creek District board members — Bruce Jaffe, Rachel Lather and Carla Christensen — will continue in their jobs, significantly leading their two opponents by a wide margin.

Scotts Valley City Council

  • In Scotts Valley, the slate of Derek Timm, an incumbent, and Alan Timms have won two seats on council. Incumbent Jim Reed trailed Timms by nearly 6 points.

Pajaro Valley Health Care District

  • Joe Gallagher (41%) and Marcus Pimentel (31%) have both won seats on the new Pajaro Valley Health Care District. Jasmine Notanee Najera came in third, with 27% of the vote.

State Assembly

  • Former Santa Cruz County Clerk Pellerin, a Democrat, has been elected in District 28 over Republican opponent Liz Lawler. Pellerin earned 68% of the vote districtwide to Lawler’s 32%. Pellerin captured 79% support within Santa Cruz County.
  • District 29 incumbent Democrat Rivas, who is set to become Assembly Speaker next year, earned a nearly 28-point lead over Republican Stephanie Castro. Rivas captured 64% of the districtwide vote to Castro’s 36%. That margin was even wider in Santa Cruz County, where Rivas earned 72.5%.
  • Democrat Addis beat Republican Vicki Nohrden by a 24-point margin in District 30. Addis captured 62% of the overall votes counted districtwide. That margin was even wider in Santa Cruz County, where Addis earned 75% of the vote to Nohrden’s 25%.

Contests still to be decided:

Capitola City Council

  • In Capitola, incumbent Yvette Brooks appeared to have secured one of three city council seats up for grabs, with 26% of the vote. But four other candidates are neck and neck for the two remaining seats. Alexander Pedersen, Joe Clarke, Gerry Jensen and Enrique Dolmo Jr. all have between 18% and 19% of the vote. Just 77 votes separate the four, with Pedersen in the lead, followed by Clarke. Jensen and Dolmo are separated by 31 votes, or 0.32 percentage points.


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