Treasurer’s election not settled yet

FLINT TWP. — A ballot recount scheduled to take place this morning should settle the treasurer’s race.

Donald Thompson, who was a candidate for township treasurer in the Aug. 7 primary, filed a petition for a recount last week with the Genesee County Clerk’s elections division.

In official balloting, Thompson trailed Marsha Binelli by only 24 votes. He received 1285 votes, 39.9 percent, compared to Binelli’s 1309 votes, 40.7 percent. Nathaniel Olivo, a third candidate, trailed with 605 votes, 18 percent.

They were running for an open seat since five-term treasurer Sandra Wright decided not to seek re-election.

Noting how close the vote was, Thompson said he decided to ask for a recount.

“I am not suggesting fraud or any kind of trickery,” he said. “It was a very hot day and the likelihood for human error.”

Since the election, supporters have suggested that he seek a recount, he said.

“So I thought “what the heck,’ that was five months of work and no results.”

Thompson’s background includes operating 8 restaurant franchises in Genesee County, including four in Flint Township, for 29 years in which he oversaw 25 managers and 160 employees.

It is his first time running for office.

Asked to comment, Olivo, the third candidate, said he was glad to see Thompson request a recount.

“The count was close. There were errors on the absentee ballots,” he said.

“Additionally I was surprised when the voters of Flint Township elected someone with no qualifications to manage the finances of the township. Many questions have been raised.”

Binelli, who worked previously for the township as a deputy supervisor and a code enforcement officer, did not return phone calls or e-mails requesting comment.

Township Clerk Kim Courts said the recount would be conducted by workers arranged by the Genesee County Board of Canvassers. No township election workers would be to involved.

If the election results stand, Binelli, a Democrat, will be unopposed in the November general election.

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