Voting comes to a close in city elections; Ballot count underway
All polling stations which opened as early as Monday for the municipal elections in the Netherlands closed at 9 p.m. on Wednesday. Election workers across the country are now counting the votes cast in the election.
The process of counting votes is generally open to the public. People are allowed to stop by and watch the event unfold, but they are not allowed to hinder the workers. In Amsterdam all votes are counted in the RAI convention center. Rotterdam has set up in Ahoy, and the Jaarbeurs is being used by ballot counters in Utrecht. The concert venue, World Forum, is where election workers are gathered in The Hague.
The votes cast on Monday and Tuesday were also counted on Wednesday during the day. The option for early voting was available because of the coronavirus pandemic, just like last year during the Tweede Kamer elections. The outcome of this count will be announced shortly after the polls close.
The counting is done by hand and starts with a quick count of all valid votes per political party. The polling stations pass on the results of the quick count to their municipality. Then the valid votes are counted per candidate. When that is ready, the polling station draws up an official report, which is delivered to the municipality.
The polling stations add up the results on the basis of the official reports. On Monday 21 March, the central municipal polling stations will then determine the official result and the distribution of seats during a public meeting.On Wednesday 30 March, the incumbent city council members will step down, and the new members will be sworn in. Due to a municipal reclassification with Weesp, this will already take place on 24 March in the city of Amsterdam.
Reporting by ANP