Primary election 2023: Berks election officials certify results

Jun. 5—Berks County election officials have finalized the tally of results from the primary election.

During a special meeting Monday, the elections board voted unanimously to certify the vote totals and authorize the submission of the results to the secretary of the commonwealth.

There is now a clear picture of which Democratic and Republican candidates will be on the ballot for municipal, school, county and judicial races in November. Independent and third-party candidates still have a chance to petition to be on the ballot before the lineup is final.

Elections Director Anne Norton told the elections board that her team performed the required reviews and audits of the May 16 election, finding no variations or discrepancies with the official tally.

"I'm sure I can speak for all the people in my department when I say we are happy to certify the results and put it behind us," she said. "And now we will move on to preparing for the general election."

County Commissioner Lucine Sihelnik, chairwoman of the elections board, commended the election services team for the hard work and long hours they put into making sure every vote was counted. She said now that the primary was behind the county they should celebrate a successful election.

Berks Judge Jill Gehman Koestel, who also serves on the election board, thanked the team as well. But added that she was a little disappointed that only a small number of registered voters cast ballots in this year's primary election.

Overall, just over 24% of registered Democrats and Republicans voted. That number was on par with recent, similar elections. In the 2021 municipal primary, for example, turnout was likewise just over 24%.

"I don't think people realize that elections for some races can virtually end after the primary," she said. "I wish more people went out to vote."