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San Diego Registrar of Voters certifies election, voter turnout nearly 85%

One race ended in a tie. Another came down to just five votes.

SAN DIEGO COUNTY, California — It's been one month since the election, an election unlike any other in history. It will be remembered as one of the most complicated and expensive elections ever in San Diego County.

The Registrar of Voters Michael Vu officially certified the election in San Diego County on Thursday.

"This is the first time in any generation where we had to change the entire model of conducting an election," said Registrar of Voters Michael Vu. "That’s never been done in the history of our county."

He told News 8 overall, the election went smoothly. Though more people than ever voted in San Diego County, the percentage of registered voters who voted was 83.5 percent, just shy of hitting the county record.

Vu said nearly 90 percent of voters voted by mail-in ballot, which raises questions about how elections will be carried out in the future.

"Something that policymakers, legislatures, [the] board of supervisors would need to take into consideration is what were the costs associated with in-person voting versus what were the costs associated with mail balloting?" he said.

Vu said some legislators are already looking at potentially continuing to send out mail-in ballots to all registered voters in the future.

"There is a place for polling places - the question is how many of them and how long?" he said.

Meanwhile, some of the races were incredibly tight this year. 

The 2nd District County Supervisor race between Steve Vaus and Joel Anderson came down to just 282 votes after over 289,000 votes were cast with Anderson narrowly beating his opponent.

The Santee City Council race came down to just a five vote difference - with Dustin Trotter beating Samantha Hurst. The Warner Unified School Board race between Terry Cox and Gene Doxey ended in a tie. Vu said it could be broken by something as simple as flipping a coin.

"If there’s any questions about that every vote counts, this is an election that you can look at and say every vote did matter," he said.

Vu told News 8 they'll spend months analyzing what worked, what didn't work, as well as calculating the cost of this election. We won't know a final price tag for several months.

For full election results, click here.

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