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Montana politics, elections and legislative news.

Recount announced for closely contested state utility board seat

Montana’s Secretary of State has announced a recount will take place in the Republican primary for a seat on the state’s utility oversight board.

Four Republican candidates competed for their party’s nomination to run for the Montana Public Service Commission’s District 5. Unofficial results from the June 7 primary election show that Flathead doctor Annie Bukacek received 87 more votes than state lawmaker Derek Skees, also of the Flathead.

That slim margin falls just within the threshold needed to automatically trigger a state-funded recount of votes. Skees petitioned the Secretary of State’s office to begin the process.

District 5 includes Flathead, Lake, Lewis & Clark and Teton Counties. Election administrators in those counties will conduct the recount.

Shaylee is Montana Public Radio's Capitol reporter. She previously worked for the Bozeman Daily Chronicle and covered the 2019 legislative session for the University of Montana's Legislative News Service.