A dozen local races remain undecided in Orange County a week after the Nov. 2 election, as officials struggle to tally a mountain of uncounted ballots.
An estimated 1,045,000 people voted in Orange County, a figure that probably will boost turnout from 52% on election day to 70% by Nov. 30, when the vote must be certified.
But only about three-quarters of those ballots -- including all of those cast electronically -- were counted in the hours after the election. About half of the rest -- 260,000 absentee and provisional ballots that require special handling -- have been counted over the last week, with 120,000 left to go.
Election officials blamed the mounds of unopened ballots on a rush of new voters who sought to register at the last minute, distracting election workers who otherwise would have been tallying early absentee ballots.