Reporting Election Results - November 3, 2015 Consolidated Municipal Election

Reporting Preliminary Results after the Close of Polls on Election Night*

The Department will release the first preliminary summary report of election results at approximately 8:45 p.m. This report will provide the results from the vote-by-mail ballots that the Department receives and processes before Election Day.

With this first summary report, the Department will also release a preliminary Statement of the Vote, a results report for the ranked-choice contests, and a ballot image file for the ranked-choice contests.*

At approximately 9:45 p.m., the Department will release a second summary report of results that includes votes cast at the polling places. At approximately 10:45 p.m. the Department intends to issue a third summary report of results.

After all polling places have reported, the Department will release a final summary report, as well as a second preliminary Statement of the Vote, a second report of preliminary results for the ranked-choice contests, and a ballot image file for the ranked-choice contests. 

Election results will be available from the following sources: 

  • San Francisco Government Television – SFGTV, Channel 26, will report summary results throughout the night as a banner during SFGTV programming.
  • sfelections.org – all results reports, including the reports for the ranked-choice contests and the preliminary Statement of the Vote, will be posted on the Department’s website
  • City Hall, North Light Court – a large screen will display SFGTV programming that will show summary results; printed copies of the summary results reports and ranked-choice results will be available at approximately 8:45 p.m., with updates (excluding ranked-choice results reports) available at approximately 9:45 p.m., 10:45 p.m., and 11:30 p.m. The last report of the evening will include updated ranked-choice results.
  • Department of Elections, City Hall, Room 48 – printed copies of results reports will be available at the Department’s front counter (due to their length, the preliminary Statement of the Vote and ballot image files for ranked-choice contests will not be printed). 

The Department will post a sample “zero” summary report at sfelections.org on October 5. This zero report will include a navigation path to the webpages that will display the preliminary results posted on Election Night and after Election Day.

* The Department will apply the ranked-choice algorithm even when the preliminary results report includes a contest in which one candidate has a majority of the first-choice votes. When there are two or fewer candidates running in a ranked-choice contest when the Department prepares ballots, the Department may program this contest so that each voter-choice column tabulates independently, with each column essentially being its own separate contest. For such contests, the Statement of the Vote will include candidate totals for first-choice, second-choice, and third-choice votes. However, it will not include ballot image files of the votes cast for these contests.

Reporting Preliminary Results after Election Day

Ballot processing continues after Election Day until the Department has counted the votes cast on all ballots. Ballots that the Department processes after Election Day include vote-by-mail ballots that voters dropped off at the polling places, the City Hall drop-off stations, or that the Department received in the mail within three days of Election Day; provisional ballots; ballots with write-in votes; and votes cast on the Edge accessible voting machines (which the Department must transfer onto paper ballots and tabulate on the same equipment used for counting vote-by-mail ballots).

At 4 p.m. every day on which the Department counts ballots, the Department will release updated results reports. On any days during which no ballots are counted, the Department will post a notice on sfelections.org stating that no update will be issued for a specified day or days.

Preliminary Statement of the Vote, Neighborhood Turnout Report, and Precinct Turnout Map

During the first and last reports on Election Night, and at 4 p.m. on any day after Election Day during which ballots are counted, the Department will release preliminary versions of the following reports:

  • Statement of the Vote, showing a precinct-by-precinct breakdown of votes cast at polling places and by mail, including neighborhood and district breakdowns in the following formats:
    • PDF
    • Excel
    • TSV (tab-separated values)
    • Raw text
  • Neighborhood Turnout Report
  • Precinct Turnout Map

Preliminary Ranked-Choice Results Reports

During the first and last reports on Election Night, and at 4 p.m. on any day after Election Day during which ballots are counted, the Department will release the following preliminary reports for ranked-choice voting contests, including those contests for which there are majority leaders:

  • Ballot image file in raw text format
  • Round-by-round elimination reports in HTML table and PDF formats

Round-by-round reports in HTML and PDF formats will show elimination of candidates until only two candidates remain.

The Department will post each preliminary report on sfelections.org in chronological order, labeled by the date the report was issued.

Reporting Final Election Results

The Department will release final election results no later than November 27, which is the end of the canvass period.

After certifying the election results, the Department will deliver the certified statement of the results and associated attachments to the Clerk of the Board of Supervisors and the Secretary of State, and will post the documents on sfelections.org.

Additionally, the Department will post the final results outside the Department’s office, City Hall, Room 48, as well as issue a press release and notifications on Facebook and Twitter that the election results are certified.