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Editorial: Every vote counts in school election

You know all those people who talk about the difference a single vote can make? Turns out they might be onto something.

When the vote counting finally went final in the late hours of Tuesday evening the Farmington School District found itself with an unusual situation on its hands: a tie in a school board election. As things stood when board members adjourned a special meeting called to await results Tuesday night board candidates Carol Kappes and Bruce Westover each had 360 votes. Jim Peroutky was just nine votes behind with 351.

With just one spot left in the Nov. 4 general election, a whole lot rides on a vote here or a vote there.

Close elections are becoming a common occurrence in the district. A group of district residents requested a recount last November when an operating levy question passed by just 12 votes.

Overall, voter turnout for Tuesday's primary was respectable. There were 4,222 votes cast Tuesday. It's not a huge number considering the size of the district, but given the nature of primaries, which seldom have huge stakes, it's not bad. The board members gathered Tuesday seemed generally happy with the turnout, and that amount of participation is a sign people in District 192 are following this election closely.

Then again, this board election has been different from the start. Two years ago it took a pair of last-minute filings just to give the district enough candidates to fill the two available seats.

That nine candidates filed this time around -- one later withdrew -- is a positive. It makes it clear district residents are paying attention to what is happening in their schools. And while the candidates have not always agreed with each other, the large field should at least guarantee some spirited debate in the weeks leading up to Nov. 4.

We look forward to seeing what happens next.