Election Committee


The Village Election Committee is responsible for planning, managing and overseeing the annual Village Council Elections. The Village Charter requires that the Village Council appoint a minimum of three residents to the Committee.

The Fiscal Year 2020 Village Election Committee consists of the following Village residents:

  • Marty Langelan (Chestnut Street) (Chair)
  • Jesse Tampio (Summit Avenue) (Vice-Chair)
  • Lauren Biel (Delfield Street)
  • Halie Soifer (Turner Lane)
  • Lorie Mitchell (Cummings Lane)

2020 Candidate Materials


2019 Election Committee Report

The candidate forum was audio recorded, and can be listened to by clicking the link below:
VMA Candidate Forum Audio- April 28, 2019

FROM THE VMA ELECTION COMMITTEE

May 10, 2019

Dear candidates, Council members, and neighbors, 

Here are the full results of the May 9, 2019, Council Election for the Village of Martin's Additions:                       

Richard Krajeck - 154 votes

Katya Hill - 153 votes

Peter Kahn - 150 votes.    

The Election Committee congratulates the winning candidates and thanks all three candidates for the positive, courteous community campaigns they ran.

There were 17 votes for write-in candidates, as well:  Frank Correl, Peter Glassman, Katie Howard, Susan Kahn, and Jean Sperling each received two votes. Debbie Brown, Hanne Correl, Andrew Kauders, Jackie Polland, Larry Wasson, Paul Weller, and Mike Zielinski each received one vote.

Some residents voted for only one person, resulting in a total of 36 votes not cast, and six ballots were disqualified as invalid because the voter voted for more than two people.

Because the election results were so close, the Election Committee took extra time to double-check the vote counts. We also consulted the Village attorney on Friday morning to make sure that we had correctly handled the ballots where residents voted for more than two candidates.  

There was an excellent turnout: A total of 261 voters, an increase of more than 60% over the tally of 162 voters last year. 210 ballots were cast at the polling table this year – more than one voter a minute. VMA residents also completed 51 absentee ballots -- that’s three times the number we had last year, and a truly remarkable 81% return rate on the 63 absentee ballots that were requested during the absentee-voting period.

Our thanks go to Diane Everts and Susan Post, who assisted us as temporary Committee members on Election Day – to the VMA staff, Matt Trollinger and Tina Lurie, for their exceptionally helpful and diligent work in support of all the Election Committee’s mailings, notices, meetings, and logistics – to all the local shops, artists, volunteers, and community groups who so generously participated in the Village Celebration on the Sidewalk on Election Day -- and a special thank-you to VMA’s distinguished weatherman, Keith Allen, who made good on his promise to keep us from getting rained on this year.

Respectfully submitted by the 2019 Martin’s Additions Election Committee:                    

Marty Langelan (chair), Lauren Shweder Biel, Lorie Mitchell, Halie Soifer, and Jesse Tampio


A NOTE FROM THE CHAIR OF THE ELECTION COMMITTEE

Dear Neighbors,

Some of you might like more details about why the 2019 election took longer than usual. It was an amazing election, and transparency is important, so we'd like to tell you more about it.

It was the closest election here in many years. At the end of the counting, all three candidates were within four votes of each other (out of 261 voters and 522 votes). The Election Committee has a careful system for vote-counting, and we double-checked the entire count again that night to make sure we had it right.

As noted in our election report, there were also some ballots that the Committee had to disqualify. The instructions on the ballot said, "Vote for up to two people, including any write-in candidates. Voting for more than two people invalidates the ballot." 255 voters (98%) followed these instructions. However, there were six ballots where a voter appeared to have voted for three people. Each of those ballots showed two candidates and one write-in, or one candidate and two write-ins.

When someone enters three votes for only two open seats, there's no way for the election officials to determine the voter's intent. By law, the Election Committee is not allowed to decide which two of your three votes we will count. The whole ballot becomes invalidated. Legally, none of those votes can be counted; the ballot is automatically disqualified.

There was one further complication. On many ballots, and all six of the ballots in question, voters entered write-in names but did not put a check-mark in the box next to the words "write-in." Is checking the write-in box necessary, or does the write-in name by itself count as a vote? We needed the answer to that legal question before we could certify the final vote tally. If a ballot had one checked box for a candidate and two write-in names with no checked boxes, did that count as only one actual vote (ballot is valid) or three votes (ballot is disqualified)?

At 11 pm on Thursday night, after an extensive discussion, we decided that we had to consult the Village attorney to be sure. On Friday morning, we verified the election law. The Maryland State Board of Elections rules say: "Failure to fill in the oval for a write-in will not invalidate the vote for that candidate." The Village attorney, who specializes in local government law, confirmed that writing a name on the write-in line is a vote for that person, whether or not the box is checked. That meant that all six ballots did indeed show three votes and we had no choice but to disqualify them.

We all have day jobs, but at lunchtime Friday, the Committee was able to reconvene by email to certify the election and announce the voting results. When we got home from work Friday evening, we finished the detailed election report, coordinated it with all the Committee members, and sent it to the candidates, the Council, and the VMA staff to post, which they did on Saturday morning. 

We wish that we could have issued the 2019 election results faster. But sometimes it just takes a little longer to be sure to do things right.

The 2019 election results are final. None of the votes on the disqualified ballots make any difference, since none of them can legally be counted. We hope all VMA residents will please keep this experience in mind for future elections. When a ballot says vote for only two people, please don't vote for three. We'll redesign the ballots next year to make this even clearer.

We extend our warmest congratulations to Richard and Katya, and to Peter as well. We wish all three candidates every success in the years ahead.

Thank you all for voting. Martin's Additions takes pride in having honest and accurate elections, and it's an honor to serve on your Election Committee.

With best regards,

Marty Langelan
Chair, 2019 VMA Election Committee
VMAelections@gmail.com

 Election Rules and Procedures:


Agendas:

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting April 5, 2020: Election Committee Agenda 4.5.20

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting March 18, 2020: Election Committee Agenda 3.18.20

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting January 12, 2020:  Election Committee Agenda 1.12.20

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting May 8, 2019: Election Committee Agenda 5.1.19

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting March 27, 2019: Election Committee Agenda 3.27.19

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting February 3, 2019: Election Committee Agenda 2.3.19

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting November 27, 2018: Election Committee Agenda 11.27.18

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting March 12, 2018: Election Committee Agenda 3.12.18

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting February 12, 2018: Election Committee Agenda 02.12.18

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting October 12, 2017:  Election Committee Agenda 10.12.17

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting September 27, 2017: Election Committee Agenda 9.27.17

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting August 22, 2017: Election Committee Agenda 8.22.17

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting April 20, 2017: Election Committee Agenda 4.20.17

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting April 11, 2017: Election Committee Agenda 4.11.17

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting February 27, 2017: Election Committee Agenda 2.27.17

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting February 6, 2017: Election Committee Agenda 2.6.17

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting October 5, 2016: Election Committee Agenda 10.5.16

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting May 31, 2016: Election Committee Agenda 5.31.16

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting April 13, 2016: Election Committee Agenda 4.13.16

Agenda for the Election Committee meeting February 23, 2016: Election Committee Agenda 2.23.16

Minutes:

Minutes from the Election Committee meeting held on March 27, 2019, can be found here: VMA Election Committee Minutes - Mar. 27, 2019

Minutes from the Election Committee meeting held on February 3, 2019, can be found here: VMA Election Committee Minutes - Feb. 3, 2019

Minutes for the Election Committee meeting held on November 27, 2018, can be found here: VMA Election Committee Minutes - Nov. 27, 2018

Minutes for the Election Committee meeting held on March 12, 2018, can be found here: VMA Election Committee Minutes - Mar. 12, 2018

Minutes for the Election Committee meeting held on February 12, 2018, can be found here: VMA Election Committee Minutes - Feb. 12, 2018

Minutes for the Election Committee meeting held on September 27, 2017, can be found here: VMA Election Committee Minutes - Oct. 12, 2017

Minutes for the Election Committee meeting held on September 27, 2017, can be found here: VMA Election Committee Minutes - Sept. 27, 2017

Minutes for the Election Committee meeting held on August 22, 2017 can be found here: VMA Election Committee Minutes - Aug. 22, 2017

Minutes for the Election Committee Open House held on March 12, 2017, can be found here: VMA Open House 3.12.17 minutes with attachment

Minutes for the Election Committee meeting held on Feb. 6, 2017 can be found here: VMA Election Committee Minutes – Feb 6, 2017

Minutes for the Election Committee meeting held on Feb. 23, 2016 can be found here: VMA Election Committee Minutes – Feb 23, 2016

Minutes for the Election Committee meeting held on Dec. 22, 2015 can be found here: VMA Election Committee Minutes – Dec 22 2015

Minutes for the Election Committee meeting held on Nov. 3. 2015, can be found here: VMA Election Committee Minutes – Nov 3 2015

VMA Council Candidates Forum April 2016:

VMA Council Candidates (Partial Record) - 4/28/2016

Election Committee Recommendations January 2016:

Election Committee Report

Elections Process Recommendations

Election Survey Results can be found here: Elections Survey Results with Comments

Maryland Open Meetings Act:

Citizens interested in learning about the Maryland Open Meetings Act may wish to take the free online training offered by the University of Maryland. A Certificate of Completion is available after the review. The link to the class is here: Open Meetings Act training – Univ of MD

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location

7013 Brookville Road, Suite B, 2nd Floor
Chevy Chase, Maryland 20815-3263
Office Hours 9 AM - 5 PM Monday-Friday

phone

Phone: 301-656-4112
Fax: 301-656-0030

mail

manager@martinsadditions.org avm@martinsadditions.org