EVERETT — The top three candidates for the Everett mayor’s job were separated by just 94 votes as of Wednesday night.
Only two can proceed to the November general election, but it could be days before it’s safe to guess who.
The next round of updated numbers from the Snohomish County elections office is scheduled for 5 p.m. Thursday. About 86,760 ballots have been counted. If election officials’ initial estimate of 25 percent turnout holds, that could leave up to 28,000 ballots left to go countywide.
In County Council races with more than two candidates, candidates held onto their primary-night positions.
County Councilman Nate Nehring was on his way to defend his seat in the general election. The Republican, who was appointed in January, had 39.3 percent of the votes in a field of four candidates. Democrat Ray Miller, with 35.2 percent, is his apparent challenger to represent District 1 in north Snohomish County.
Incumbent County Councilman Sam Low and challenger Kristin Kelly looked to be headed to the general election out of the three-person field in Council District 5. Low, a Republican, had about 55.5 percent of the votes in the east county district. Kelly, a Democrat, had 32.2 percent.
Incumbent David Chan continued to lead a five-person field for a south county fire commissioner’s job. Chan had 42.8 percent support to retain his position with Fire District 1. Michael Ellis was the closest challenger, with 17.6 percent, followed by P. Bret Chiafalo in third with 14.9 percent.
Mukilteo City Council incumbent Bob Champion likely will face controversial aerospace exec Peter Zieve in November. Champion enjoyed a comfortable 54.4 percent of the total. Zieve, with 26.9 percent, was 282 votes ahead of third-place finisher Tina Over.
Marysville council incumbent Donna Wright was behind challenger Mark James by less than one percentage point. They are likely to proceed over Jason Call, the third candidate. James led with 36.2 percent.
Snohomish also could see a new mayor for 2018. John Kartak led with 43.7 percent on Wednesday, followed by Karen Guzak with 32.7 percent.
Whomever wins the general election will become the city’s “strong mayor.” An initiative last year made the job a separately elected position, instead of a mayor chosen from among City Council members.
In south county, Lynnwood’s proposed merger with Fire District 1 appears to be passing, at 54.3 percent. If patterns hold, the merger could be formed as soon as October.
Emergency services levies were doing well in Marysville and Fire District 7, though in Snohomish it was close at 51.7 percent.