Premier Christy Clark with BC Liberal Skeena riding winner Ellis Ross. Jackie Lieuwen photo

Gap slightly narrowed in final Skeena provincial election vote count

But BC Liberal Ellis Ross maintained substantial lead

PROVINCIAL Skeena riding winner BC Liberal Ellis Ross had his margin over New Democrat contender Bruce Bidgood reduced slightly as a result of absentee vote counting this week.

On election night Ross topped the polls with 6,370 votes to Bidgood’s 5,089.

But a count of absentee ballots May 22 revealed Bidgood taking that category by 524 votes to Ross’s 402.

When the absentee ballots were added to the regular ones, Ross came out with 6,772 votes or 52.23 per cent of ballots castto Bidgood’s 5,613 or 43.29 per cent of ballots cast.

Merv Ritchie of the Land Air Water party finished with 580 votes or 4.47 per cent of ballots cast.

Overall, 12,965 ballots were cast in Skeena in this election representing a 64.8 per cent voter turnout, a healthy increaseover the last election in 2013 when 55.85 per cent of Skeena voters turned out to the polls.

Absentee ballots are defined as those cast either outside of the electoral district or not a person’s assigned voting place either on election day or during advance voting days.

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