Voters say ‘no’ to Safford School override, Chapman wins third seat on Thatcher School Board

Safford High School - David Bell Photo/Gila Valley Central

SAFFORD — With the provisional ballots counted, the final two races in Graham County have been decided.

Debbie Chapman won the third seat on the Thatcher Unified School District’s governing board. Chapman finished with 17.93 percent of the vote while David Udall finished with 17.24 percent. A total of 61 votes separated the two.

The other two seats went to the incumbents seeking re-election, Kate McCluskey and Kenny Smith, who both finished with 200 or more votes than the rest of the field.

The other issue that wasn’t decided until all the ballots were counted was the Safford Unified School District’s proposed budget override.

Voters rejected the override by a mere 13 votes, with 3,273 voting no and 3,260 voting yes.

Voters in favors of the override cast more ballots on the day of voting and carried the provisional ballots by a combined 875 to 815; however, early voting was dominated by voters opposed, 2,305 to 2,231.

A total of 15,111 ballots were cast by county voters in the general election, for a 76.12-percent voter turnout. Nearly 10,000 of the ballots were cast early, 63.7 percent of all the ballots cast.

All results are considered unofficial until the election is canvassed by the Board of Supervisors.