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Despite 10-vote margin, no recount in Royal Palm; Swift ousted


The Palm Beach County Elections Office has counted the provisional ballots and it looks like no recount will be necessary in David Swift-Richard Valuntas Village Council race in Royal Palm Beach.

After the counting of all votes, including provisional ballots, was completed early Wednesday morning, the two were separated by just 10 votes, but Valuntas won by 0.62 percent. An automatic recount is necessary only if the margin is 0.5 percent or less, according to Florida law.

READ: Get all the latest election results HERE

Swift, who has been on the council for 29 years, said he contacted a Tallahassee attorney, but a challenge would cost $10,000 to $20,000. He may try to look at some of the ballots to see if there is an issue, but said he doubts he will challenge.

Most likely this will be the end of his time on council.

“I don’t think I’m going anywhere (with) this,” Swift said Wednesday afternoon.

RELATED: Complete coverage of the 2017 municipal elections, PalmBeachPost.com/munielections

This means Valuntas will be back on the council after he lost his seat last year to now-Councilwoman Selena Smith. That was another close race with Smith getting 51.22 percent of the vote.

Valuntas had served on the council from 2010 to 2016.

Swift started his council run in the late 1980s after serving a stint as the Chairman of the village’s Planning and Zoning Board. At the time, Royal Palm Beach was one of the fastest growing municipalities in the country and those meetings would often go until after midnight, he said.

More recently, Swift was staunchly against the RaceTrac gas station at the corner of Southern and Royal Palm Beach Boulevards. He cast the lone dissenting vote on the project.



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