Update, 1 a.m.: When all the votes were counted, Bruce McPherson held the narrowest of leads over Eric Hammer early Wednesday in a hard-fought, drawn-out campaign for Fifth District Supervisor of Santa Cruz County.
McPherson, former California Secretary of State, had 26 more votes than Hammer in a race that likely will be decided by provisional ballots or possibly a recount.
The vote totals posted on the Santa Cruz County Clerk's website showed McPherson at 8,798 votes and Hammer with 8,772
"I'm feeling good because I'm ahead and uncertain because I don't know what votes are out there," McPherson said earlier in the evening, when his lead was more than 900 votes.
Hammer, who owns a construction company and previously served eight years on the board of the Boulder Creek Recreation and Park District, said he was "hopeful."
"We've always been the underdog," Hammer said. "I feel good. We ran a really good, clean campaign."
In the other local race, the Scotts Valley Fire Protection District Board of Directors likely will retain three current members. Jane Armstrong, Arthur Smith and Alan L. Smith each received more than 3,200 votes while challenger Lisa Ann Bustichi tallied 3,054 votes. The top three vote-getters will be elected.
It's time to go to the polls, and Scotts Valley and San Lorenzo Valley residents will be making a big decision about who will represent them on the county Board of Supervisors.
If the 2008 election turnout is any indication, expect a crowd at the polls today in Scotts Valley.
Four years ago, 86.6 percent of Santa Cruz County voters cast ballots; of those, 77 percent supported Democratic President Barack Obama and 19.8 percent voted for Republican candidate John McCain.
Eric Hammer and Bruce McPherson are in a heated, high-spending race for the District 5 seat on the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors.
Scotts Valley Fire Board has three incumbents and one newcomer vying for three spots on the board. The top three vote-getters will be elected.
Measure Q asks voters to increase by 1 percent the hotel tax, which would raise about $470,000 a year for city services.
At the Scotts Valley Community Center on Tuesday morning, voter Jim Josselyn said he cast his ballot for a largely Republican ticket, including Gov. Mitt Romney for president.
"Basically because I think Obama's spending ..I just think we cannot sustain that kind of program," Josselyn said.
Jeff, a 38-year-old Scotts Valley resident who declined to give his last name, said he voted for President Barak Obama.
"It's a number of things," he said. One big issue, he felt, was that Romney is looking out for the interests of rich people.
Jeff said he skipped voting for the County Supervisor position because he was "in the dark on local races."
"I decided to leave that to the people who did the research," he said.
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