Unofficial results were tabulated Tuesday night by the Winneshiek County Auditor’s office. There were 1,384 “no” votes and 1,380 “yes” votes. There are 15 outstanding absentee ballots and the county auditor says if they were postmarked by Monday, they’ll be counted.
If the referendum passes, the Decorah City Council will be able to consider forming a city-run electric utility. A “no” vote means the issue cannot go before the public for another vote for at least four years.
“With a four-vote margin and with 15 potential votes still outstanding, we are just going to let the process play out,” says Mike Wagner, a spokesman for Alliant Energy.
Emily Neal is a spokeswoman for Decorah Power, the group that supported creation of a municipal electric utility. “I think it’s a little premature to figure out who’s won and who’s lost,” Neal says.
The Winneshiek County Board of Supervisors are scheduled to conduct an official canvas of the vote on Monday.
(Reporting by Darin Svenson, KDEC, Decorah)