Voters in Long Beach will decide three council district races and two ballot measures, along with a number of county, statewide and Congressional races, including the Democratic nominee for president. The Long Beach Post will be here all night providing live updates throughout the evening.

Final election results are in: Measure A wins by 16 votes

2:54 p.m. Friday 3/27 | After weeks of teetering on the edge, the final election results show Measure A, an indefinite extension of extension of the sales tax, winning by 16 votes.

The results are scheduled to be certified today.

According to a county clerk spokesman, there is no specific amount of votes that would trigger a recount for an election. The California Elections Code allows that a recount can be called by the county “if there is reasonable cause to believe ballots have been miscounted.”

Otherwise, in order to get a recount, a person or group of people must request it and pay for it within five days of the certification of the election results. According to the Long Beach City Clerk’s office, it would cost an estimated $63,000 to $84,000.

The results for the city council elections remain relatively the same, with Robert Fox and Cindy Allen moving on to a District 2 runoff, Suely Saro and incumbent Dee Andrews facing off in a District 6 runoff and Tunua Thrash-Ntuk and incumbent Al Austin vying for the District 8 seat in November.

Tonia Reyes-Uranga and Erik Miller will face each other in a run-off for the District 2 seat on the Long Beach Unified School District Board of Education.

Doug Otto won the District 4 LBUSD seat with 51% of the vote.

Measure B passed with 59% of the vote.

Election results show Measure A losing by 9 votes; County still has 3,600 ballots to count

6:05 p.m. Tuesday 3/24 | With just a few thousand ballots left to count throughout LA County, the race for Measure A will be extremely close.

At the latest count, Measure A is failing by nine votes and all city council elections will go to a run-off, according to the latest numbers from the Los Angeles County Clerk.

The results are scheduled to be certified on Friday and it’s possible there may be additional ballots from Long Beach counted then, said county clerk spokesman Mike Sanchez.

There is no threshold that would trigger an automatic recount, he said. Any person or campaign can request a recount, but they would have to pay for it, according to Sanchez.

In the District 2 city council race, Robert Fox and Cindy Allen will be facing off in November. Fox received 3,055 votes, or 27.17%, while Allen received 2,982 votes or 26.53%. Jeanette Barerra trailed with 2,242 votes, or 19.94%.

Suely Saro and incumbent Dee Andrews will be vying for the District 6 city council seat. Saro received 2,813 votes, or 44.76%, while Andrews received 1,796 votes, or 28.58%.

In District 8, Tunua Thrash-Ntuk got 3,583 votes, or 38%, while incumbent Al Austin had 2,989 votes, or 31.71%. Juan Ovalle trailed Austin with 2,854 votes. As the top two candidates, Thrash-Ntuk and Austin will be facing off in November.

Measure B appears to have passed with 59.19% of the vote.

In the Long Beach Unified School District races, Tonia Reyes-Uranga and Erik Miller will face each other in a November run-off for the District 2 seat. Reyes-Uranga received 42.6% of the vote and Miller received 36.47%.

Doug Otto appears to have won the LBUSD District 4 race with 51.2% of the vote.

— Valerie Osier

Final election results likely next week

5:45 p.m. Friday 3/20 | After weeks of watching election results go back-and-forth, Los Angeles County officials are nearing the end of their count of more than two million ballots.

The county estimates it has about 20,100 ballots left to count as of Friday afternoon.

The fate of Measure A still hangs in the balance. Currently, it is failing by 130 votes.

All of the city council elections are likely headed to a November runoff if none of the candidates can earn 50%, plus one vote.

In District 2, Robert Fox continues to lead with 27% of the vote, followed by Cindy Allen with 26% of the vote. Suely Saro is leading District 6 with about 45% of the vote with incumbent Dee Andrews trailing with 29%. In District 8, Tunua Thrash-Ntuk has 38% of the vote and incumbent Al Austin has 32% of the vote.

The final update is expected on Tuesday.

— Valerie Osier

Fox widens his lead over Allen; Measure A continues to fail

6:40 p.m. Tuesday 3/17 | With about 64,000 ballots countywide still left to be tallied, all races for city council seats appear to be headed for a runoff as Measure A is still failing.

The latest numbers from the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder Clerk’s Office, released Tuesday afternoon, show District 2 candidate Robert Fox nearly 100 votes ahead of Cindy Allen. Suely Saro is still leading in District 6 with 45% of the vote, with incumbent Dee Andrews trailing with about 28% of the vote.

In District 8, Tunua Thrash-Ntuk is leading with 38% of the vote with incumbent Al Austin at about 32%. Juan Ovalle is trailing Austin with about 30% with 140 votes separating them.

If any candidate does not get at least 50% plus one vote, the two candidates with the highest vote totals will face off in a Nov. 3 runoff.

Measure A, the indefinite extension of a sales-tax, continues to fail by 355 votes.

The next update is expected Friday.

— Valerie Osier

No on Measure A vote widens; council races maintain standings

4:55 p.m. Friday 3/13 | The indefinite extension of the Measure A sales-tax continues to fail with the margin between it passing or failing widening to over 700 votes.

Those figures are based on the latest release of election counts from the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder Clerk’s Office Friday afternoon, which saw little change in Long Beach’s other races that are either decided or headed to a Nov. 3 runoff.

The No on A vote continued to solidify Friday, adding about 240 votes to its advantage since the county last updated figures earlier this week. There have been a total of 88,536 votes tabulated for and against Measure A.

The city’s three contested City Council races all remained nearly the same with slight changes in the percentages of the two frontrunners who have been trending toward the runoff since election night.

Robert Fox grew his lead by 30 votes over Cindy Allen in the 2nd District race. Both candidates remain at about 27% of the overall vote with Allen now behind Fox by 65 votes.

Challenger Suely Saro continues to lead the incumbent Councilman Dee Andrews in the 6th District race with Saro growing her lead to about 800 votes. Both Saro (44.28%) and Andrews (29.28%) remain comfortably ahead of the third place candidate, who still sits below 19%.

In the 8th District, Tunua Thrash-Ntuk more than doubled the margin between her and incumbent Councilman Al Austin. On Tuesday, Ntuk-Thrash was 222 votes ahead of Austin but Friday’s release showed her lead at over 450 votes.

While Thrash-Ntuk and Austin are still expected to face each other in the November runoff Austin’s lead over Juan Ovalle has fallen to just 183 votes.

A county spokesperson said that the number of outstanding ballots would be updated later Friday evening. On Tuesday, the figure stood at over 490,000 ballots.

— Jason Ruiz

Measure A failing by wider margin, Fox, Saro and Thrash-Ntuk maintain lead

4:55 p.m. Tuesday 3/10 | The first update of the week on vote totals is showing Measure A failing by a wider margin while council candidates Robert Fox, Suely Saro and Tunua Thrash-Ntuk continue to lead in their respective races.

Measure A is currently failing by 469 votes at 49.67% while Measure B continues to show strong numbers with 58% of the vote.

In the 2nd District, Fox increased his lead over Cindy Allen by 35 votes. They are both at about 27% of the vote.

Sixth District candidate Suely Saro continues to lead with 44% of the vote. A total of 614 separates her from incumbent Dee Andrews.

In the 8th District, challenger Thrash-Ntuk has 222 votes more than incumbent Al Austin. She continues to lead with 36% of the vote.

The county clerk’s office said there are 493,450 ballots left to tally.

— Stephanie Rivera

Tunua Thrash-Ntuk overtakes Al Austin in latest election update
Al Austin, left, Juan Ovalle, center and Tunua Thrash-Ntuk, right, candidates for the District 8 City Council In Long Beach Thursday Feb.13, 2020. The race to make it to the November runoff remains tight after Tuesday’s primary vote. Photo by Thomas R. Cordova.

4:30 p.m. Friday | More election results were released Friday afternoon with Robert Fox maintaining his lead over Cindy Allen in District 2 by 16 votes.

Suely Saro remained ahead of incumbent Dee Andrews with 44% of the vote. Andrews is at 29.64%.

Tunua Thrash-Ntuk overtook incumbent Al Austin in District 8 by 131 votes. She is now leading with 36% of the vote.

Measure A is still on the edge of failure, with 124 votes separating it from passing.

The county clerk’s office said they still have an estimated 678,050 ballots left to count.

— Staff Reports

Election update shows Measure A down by 210 votes, Robert Fox leading in District 2

4:25 p.m. Thursday | Measure A is now failing by 210 votes in the latest election results update by the county on Thursday afternoon. In the 2nd District, with 1,725 votes, Robert Fox jumped ahead of Cindy Allen by six votes.

In the 6th District, Suely Saro maintained her lead with 44.03% or 1,511 votes. Incumbent Dee Andrews trails behind with 30% or 1,023 votes.

In the 8th District, incumbent Al Austin remained at 35% with Tunua Thrash-Ntuk staying at second place at 34%.

Measure B is still passing at 58%.

The county clerk’s office said that approximately 802,000 votes still left to be counted.

— Stephanie Rivera

Latest count shows District 2, Measure A races deadlocked 

6:45 p.m. Wednesday | With an estimated 573,750 ballots still left to be counted countywide, the race for District 2 grew even closer with one vote separating front runners Cindy Allen and Robert Fox. In the Measure A race, less than 30 votes separated the Yes and No sides.

As residents across the county waited, Los Angeles County election officials were working on Wednesday afternoon to update election results with as many ballots as possible, a spokesman said. The process of updating the count—including getting the ballots, transporting them and tallying them—began around 1 p.m. he said.

County Clerk Dean Logan tweeted that 94,345 additional Vote Center ballots and 17,769 additional mail-in ballots were counted, but initially did not include an estimate of how many were left to be counted. The last vote by mail ballots will be delivered on Friday and the estimate of 573,750 does not include vote by mail ballots that were dropped off at Vote Centers on Election Day. The County Clerk has 30 days to count the votes and certify the election.

In District 6, Suely Saro maintained her lead over incumbent Dee Andrews at 44%. The District 8 race is split three ways with Al Austin leading at 36%. Tunua Thrash-Ntuk is in second, maintaining her overnight lead ahead of Juan Ovalle at 34%.

Measure B appears to be passing with 58% of the vote.

In the Long Beach Unified School District board races, District 2—which includes Central and West Long Beach— appears to be headed to a runoff between Tonia Reyes-Uranga and Erik Miller, who earned 44% and 35% of the vote respectively.

Doug Otto, an attorney who is now a member of the Long Beach City College Board of Trustees, is maintaining his hold in the District 4 race at 52% of the vote. District 4 includes Belmont Shore, Signal Hill, Avalon and other areas. He will likely avoid a runoff barring a big swing.

— Valerie Osier

Editor’s note: This story has been updated with the estimated number of uncounted ballots.

District 8 race tightens

6:48 a.m. | If current results stand, Councilman Al Austin will be heading to a run-off with challenger Tunua Thrash-Ntuk in District 8.

For much of Tuesday night, it looked like Thrash-Ntuk—who was backed with hefty sums of cash from from the union that represents local hotel workers—would be left out of a November run-off. The third challenger in that race, reform candidate Juan Ovalle, posted strong numbers but is now in third place.

The vote tally at this point: Austin has 36% of the vote, or 1,605; Thrash-Ntuk has 34% of the vote, or 1,526; and Ovalle has 31% of the vote, or 1,375.

It is unclear how many ballots are left to be counted.

— Staff Reports

Measure A too close to call

6:35 a.m. | Arguably the most consequential item on the ballot for the city as a whole—a permanent extension of the Measure A sales tax—was too close to call early Wednesday.

Less than 50 votes separate the yes and no camps, with 25,544 people in favor and 25,590 against. It is unlikely that race will be decided today. It is unclear how many additional ballots the county has to count.

Stay tuned on that one. The measure was backed by many city leaders, including Mayor Robert Garcia, to pay for ongoing costs such as pension obligations of police and fire personnel who were hired when the first iteration of Measure A—a 10-year, 1% increase in the city’s sales tax—passed in 2016 with 60% support.

— Staff Reports

Council races appear headed for November runoffs
Suely Saro, city council candidate for District 6, hugs a supporter while at her campaign party In Long Beach Tuesday, March 3, 2020. Photo by Thomas R. Cordova.

In a midnight election result update, voter percentages remained largely unchanged with all city council districts appearing to be headed to runoffs in November.

In District 2, Robert Fox and Cindy Allen are still head to head with about 29% of the vote each.

Suely Saro has maintained her large lead in District 6 with 47% of the vote and incumbent Dee Andrews is still trailing at 31%.

In District 8, Al Austin has earned about 38% of the vote, keeping a 7 point lead ahead of Juan Ovalle and Tunua Thrash-Ntuk, who have about 5 votes separating them.

Austin says he’s not surprised that he’s polling ahead in the early results and the battle beneath him.

“I knew it was going to be a dog fight for 2nd place,” Austin said from his election party.

Thrash-Ntuk said she figured she’d be fighting an uphill battle but is confident she can close the gap.

In the LBUSD school board races, Tonia Reyes-Uranga is leading with 43% of the vote for District 2 and Doug Otto is leading with 54% in District 4.

Candidates must get at least 50% of the vote or else the race will go to a runoff between the two candidates with the highest number of votes in November.

In an unexpected turn, Measure A is failing with 48% of the vote and Measure B is so far passing with 55% of the vote.

— Staff Reports

Fox edges ahead of Allen in District 2 race
Candidate Robert Fox for the 2nd District City Council talks to supporters while at his campaign party In Long Beach Tuesday, March 3, 2020. Photo by Thomas R. Cordova.

10:15 p.m. | Robert Fox took the lead ahead of Cindy Allen with nearly 30% of the vote in the race for the District 2 council seat. Allen followed closely behind at about 28% in the second update of election night.

“I’m excited for the results and it seems very clear who I’m going into a runoff with,” Allen said to supporters at her election party.

Results stayed largely the same in the rest of the races with Suely Saro holding strong to about 47% of the vote in District 6 and incumbent Dee Andrews losing a percentage point.

“I’m in shock right now,” said an emotional Saro at her election party. “I’ve been very optimistic because we have had a campaign built from people. It’s been done with so much love and hope for something better.”

— Staff Reports

Otto, Reyes-Uranga, take lead in school board races

9:12 p.m. | Tonia Reyes-Uranga and Doug Otto took early leads in their respective races for two open seats on the Long Beach Unified School District Board of Education.

With mail-in ballots counted, Reyes-Uranga, a consultant and former city councilwoman, had 43% of votes in District 2, which includes Central and West Long Beach. Otto, an attorney who is now a member of the Long Beach City College Board of Trustees, took 55% of votes in District 4, which includes Belmont Shore, Signal Hill, Avalon and other areas.

In District 2, nonprofit director Erik Miller took 34% of the vote, and attorney John Mathews II trailed with 23% of the vote.

In District 4, Otto had a commanding lead over his two opponents: Davina Keiser, who received 25% of the vote, and Nancy Valencia who received 20% of the vote.

Both incumbents—Felton Williams in District 2 and Jon Meyer in District 4—are retiring from the board.

The Board of Education is now in the midst of a search to replace long-time superintendent Chris Steinhauser, who is retiring after 18 years.

The new board members will also have to grapple with declining student enrollment and pension costs over the next several years.

The Long Beach Unified School District employs some 3,200 teachers and has about 72,000 students, and includes Signal Hill, Avalon and parts of Lakewood.

— Valerie Osier 

Austin takes lead in District 8

9:08 p.m. | In Long Beach’s 8th District, the incumbent Al Austin took an early lead over two potent challengers: Tunua Thrash-Ntuk, a nonprofit economic director, and Juan Ovalle, a property manager who ran on a reform ticket to bring transparency to local government.

Early results, which include mail-in ballots only, show Austin with 40% of the vote, while Ovalle received about 31% of votes and Thrash-Ntuk about 28%.

The campaign for the Bixby Knolls and North Long Beach grew nasty as Election Day neared, with dozens of women signing a letter excoriating Austin largely for his 2017 vote on Claudia’s Law, an early version of a law that would have enacted protections for hotel workers.

Thrash-Ntuk, meanwhile, took in massive donations—largely from people outside of Long Beach and the hotel workers union, Unite Here Local 11.

Ovalle has been the reform candidate, championing transparency at city hall and criticizing a ballot measure to allow councilmembers to run for three terms.

If no candidate wins 50% of the vote, the top two vote-getters would go to a run-off.

— Jason Ruiz 

Saro takes big lead over incumbent
Suely Saro takes a photo with supporters as she celebrates an early lead in the District 6 City Council race. Photo by Stephanie Rivera.

9:03 p.m. | The first update of the election results Tuesday night showed challenger Suely Saro with more votes than the incumbent, Councilman Dee Andrews, in the race for District 6 in Central Long Beach.

With mail-in ballots counted, Saro has 47% of the votes; Andrews has 31% of the votes, Ana Arce with 14%, Sharifah Hardie with 2%, Josephine Villasenor with 3% and Craig Ursuy with 3%.

The 79-year-old Long Beach Unified School District educator has long held the Midtown seat, seeking what would be his fourth term. He won his current term as a write-in candidate before Long Beach’s new law eliminated the write-in option but added an additional term for council members. The law allows him to run for a final term.

Andrews, who has lived in the district for 75 years, raised less money for his campaign and earned fewer endorsements than Saro.

Saro, for her part, is highly favored by the local Democratic establishment, having out-raised all of her opponents during the campaign and scoring numerous endorsements.

The 39-year-old Cambodian refugee and social work professor at Cal State Los Angeles ran on a platform seeking change in leadership.

If elected, Saro would become the first Cambodian American on the Long Beach City Council—a significant milestone considering the city is known to have one of the largest concentrations of Cambodians outside of the country.

The District is home to the city’s famed Cambodia Town and legendary Poly High School as well as Long Beach City College’s Pacific Coast Campus. The area is also plagued by high crime and poverty as well as homelessness.

If no candidate receives over 50% of the vote then a runoff election will take place in November.

— Stephanie Rivera 

Fox and Allen are neck and neck

8:59 p.m. | In the race for Long Beach’s 2nd District, early results show businesswoman Cindy Allen, the establishment pick, neck-and-neck with Robert Fox, a realtor who ran on a government reform and transparency platform.

Each has about 29% of the vote, followed by mental health provider Jeanette Barrera at 18% and Cal State Long Beach professor Eduardo Lara at 16%.

School police officer Jose Cisneros has so far claimed about 3% of the vote, followed by activist Ryan Lum and accountant Nigel Lifsey at about 2% each.

Incumbent Jeannine Pearce is not seeking reelection, leaving the race wide open for the seven candidates vying for a Downtown district that lists parking, road diets and homelessness as top issues.

Fox has based his campaign largely on revamping the controversial road diet on the Broadway Corridor. The city, in an effort to slow traffic and make the area safer, reduced Broadway to one lane last year and added an inner bike lane – a plan that has left many residents frustrated.

Allen, a ex-Long Beach police officer who is close friends with Mayor Robert Garcia, has focused on public safety, parking and other community issues.

Her campaign saw controversy last month when it was revealed that the sale had yet not gone through for her ad agency, ETA Advertising, which has significant business contracts with the city. Blume Media head Zachary Stroud was slated to buy Allen’s agency but has since failed to follow through on financial commitments.

Allen, for her part, has said she would also change the Broadway Corridor, calling it an “absolutely horrible idea.”

— Kelly Puente

Measure A is failing; Measure B is passing

8:54 p.m. | A ballot measure that would permanently extend a 1% sales tax increase is narrowly failing at the polls, with 48% in favor and 52% against.

Measure A generates roughly $60 million a year to fund improvements to infrastructure and public safety. Supporters, including Mayor Robert Garcia and other city leaders, say a permanent extension is needed to pay for ongoing improvements, seismic upgrades to Community Hospital, police and fire salaries and other expenses. Opponents argue the tax is regressive and harms retailers, restaurants and small business owners.

Measure B, which would raise the hotel bed tax from 6% to 7% and is expected to generate about $2.8 million in new revenue, is so far passing with 54% of the vote in favor and 46% against. The revenue would fund improvements to the Long Beach Convention Center and support arts organizations throughout the city.

— Kelly Puente

National results come in

8:45 p.m. | With lines at polling centers stretching for hours, Los Angeles County still has not posted any results. It’s likely going to be a long night.

National results, however, are coming in: Bernie Sanders has already been declared the winner of the Democratic presidential race, with more than 144,000 votes, followed by Michael Bloomberg and Joe Biden.

U.S. Rep. Alan Lowenthal has also claimed a lead in the race to keep his seat representing the 47th Congressional District. He has claimed close to 9,000 votes, while John Briscoe has 6,167 and Amy Phan West has 5,500 votes.

The state ballot measure 13, a bond to fund public education facility repairs, is losing big: About 40% voted in favor, and 60% voted no.

So far just under 3% of ballots had been counted in those races.

—Staff report

Sanders campaign files injunction to keep polls open

8:15 p.m. | The Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk’s Office says all vote centers will remain open for anyone who is in line by 8 p.m.

Long lines are still being reported in multiple locations. Some voters have reported waiting in lines as long as two hours.

Multiple media reports indicated that the Bernie Sanders campaign has filed an emergency motion asking a judge to order the polls to remain open until 10 p.m.

Reporters will be out at election parties

7:23 p.m. | The Post staff has you covered when the first round of results come in shortly after 8 p.m.

Kelly Puente will be following District 2 candidates: Cindy Allen at the Hotel Maya and Robert Fox at Gallagher’s Pub & Grill. Follow her: @kellypuenteLB.

Stephanie Rivera will be out covering District 6, including Suely Saro’s party at Legend Seafood Restaurant in Cambodia Town, and Dee Andrews (and LBUSD candidate Erik Miller) will be at the Long Beach Marriott. Follow Stephanie: @stephrivera88.

Jason Ruiz will be in Uptown, where 8th District candidates will gather: Al Austin will be at Lola’s on Atlantic, and Tunua Thrash-Ntuk will be at Knoll’s Restaurant near San Antonio, and Juan Ovalle at Taboon’s Mediterranean. Follow him: @jasonruiz_lb.

—Staff report

Two hours left to vote

6 p.m. | If you still don’t know where to vote or are finding a long line at your local vote center then check out one of these below. Remember, if you are in line by 8 p.m. you can still vote.

-Stephanie Rivera

Long lines at Long Beach voting centers
Voters waited roughly an hour at a voting center near El Dorado Park on Tuesday. Photo by Stephen Carr.

4:55 p.m.  |  Voters across Los Angeles County got a taste of a new voting system implemented on this Super Tuesday election. Some of the dozen voting centers throughout the region reported long lines, and some mishaps: At least one center in Long Beach ran out of ballots, causing a slight delay. The wait at a voting center near El Dorado Park, meanwhile, was roughly an hour.

Turnout was expected to be higher than usual because California moved up its primary to March 3, giving the state more of a say in the presidential primary. That is expected to have a downstream effect on local races, including three council districts in Long Beach (Districts 2, 6 and 8) and two ballot measures: Measure A, which would extend the city’s 1% sales tax indefinitely; and Measure B, would raise the city’s hotel bed tax by 1%.

For a complete look at all the issues and candidates before local voters, click here.

Staff report