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Costs add up as counties plan for recall elections

With a state senate recall election, a recall primary and a Supreme Court recount, local election clerks are seeing their 2011 budgets fall apart.

While it's difficult to plan for these unprecedented elections, St. Croix and Pierce county clerks figure the unbudgeted expenses will total about $25,000 for each county. Those projections don't include the amounts each city, village and town will pay for poll workers and their own miscellaneous expenses.

When she prepared her 2011 budget last fall, St. Croix County Clerk Cindy Campbell figured with spring and fall elections her office would spend $57,000. She expects the recall election, the recall primary and the Supreme Court recount will add $25,000.

Pierce County Clerk Jamie Feuerhelm budgeted $55,690 for 2011 elections. He now expects the unanticipated elections and recount will add $24,000 to $32,000 to those costs.

Campbell estimates St. Croix's expenses will be $12,000 each for the recall primary and the recall election. That includes the cost of coding the election information, printing ballots, publishing election notices, paying the board of canvassers and staff overtime costs.

For more please read the June 29 print version of the Herald.

Judy Wiff

Judy Wiff has been regional editor for RiverTown’s Wisconsin newspapers since 1996. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and sociology from UW-River Falls. She has worked as a reporter for several weekly newspapers in Wisconsin.