Superintendent blames sudden influx of envelopes and ballots.
NEW ROCHELLE, NY — What else would voters expect but one more failure in a school election in New Rochelle that has been marred by numerous problems compounded by false statements issued by the Superintendent.
Six hours after the mail-in ballot closed at 5 pm Tuesday, Superintendent Dr. Laura Feijóo announced the suspension of the canvassing of ballots until 5 pm Wednesday.
Two school board candidates have previously threatened litigation due to the many irregularities. That number may grow. There are 12 candidates none of whom have been happy with how the election has been managed under the new Superintendent.
Feijóo blamed an unexpected, last minute delivery of 20 trays of ballot envelopes. As the counting got underway Tuesday evening, the District announced that 20 trays of mail were delivered by the United States Postal Service late in the day on June 12. While no exact figure was provided, a typical USPS First Class mail tray holds approximately 250 envelopes per tray so as many as 5,000 ballots may have been delivered as the delivery window closed.
There have been issues with candidates getting their names on the school board ballot and a series of delays in distributing mail-in ballots to qualified voters compounded by false statements by Feijóo that, in one instance, ballots had been shipped when they had not and, in another, that all voters had received their ballots when no voter had received a ballot.
The entire school election has been a spectacular display of incompetence by school leadership, the incompetence at the heart of a well-funded campaign to vote down the budget organized by Robert Cox, Publisher of Talk of the Sound.
“After several hours of counting ballots in the school budget vote, it is obvious that the task will not be completed tonight,” wrote Feijóo in a letter sent only to recipients on the City School District of New Rochelle email list. No press statement was issued.
“Our 52 election inspectors – four for each of 13 school election districts – have been tallying votes since 5 p.m., but a last-minute influx of ballots added too many to be removed from envelopes and recorded in one evening,” Feijóo said. “Thousands of mailed-in ballots were delivered to the District Clerk’s office in the last half hour or so before the deadline.”
“The counting will continue into tonight, and then will halt until 5 p.m. tomorrow, when the inspectors are next available. In the interim, the ballots will be stored in the same safe they have been secured in during the election process,” she added.