Handcount Tally Sheets

There are four key parts to most handcount tally sheets.

The top section of the first tally sheet is where the number of ballots are recorded. The number of ballots in each batch of ballots is recorded (in the example, 30 + 40 + 15). After the chief has notified the team that there are no more ballots to count, the batch numbers are added together to get “Total Ballots” (in the example, there are 85 total ballots).

The main section of the first and all other tally sheets has two key parts.

  • Before the polls close, the Recording Officer makes a tally mark for each vote a candidate receives on each ballot. A tally mark is also recorded for each write-in vote (but not a name).

  • After the polls close, the Recording Officer adds together all the tally marks for each candidate, including write-in votes, and puts those total vote numbers in the right column.

Some voters do not vote in every contest or enter too many votes in a contest. The chief will instruct the team on how to deal with those situations.