She thanked O’Neil for “a great race” and said she was honored to have been chosen by the voters. Broullon said she is the second female mayor in Highlands history, as well as the first openly gay mayor in Monmouth County. “I’m deeply humbled to show all our citizens you can do anything you set your mind to accomplish. I recently heard a woman say, ‘Kids need to see what they can be.’ It’s a great quote and words to live by.” How important is yourvote? In last week’s election,one municipal race was wonby a single vote and anotherby three. Liu said the campaign experience was very tough for her, starting in January and especially through the primaries. “It just got even harder,” she said. But she will take her positive experience from sitting on the school board for 10 years and bring it to the township committee. While it is a different type of public service, her “heart and passion” for it is still the same. Broullon said she hearda recount may be requestedby her opponent. O’Neil didnot respond for comment bypress time. Santhana said he and his team are considering filing for a recount, but that decision is not final. On Election Day, unofficial results gave him a 26-point lead. “If I were to lose by three, I’d like to understand why it happened,” he said. All the while, the clerk’s office waits for results and then posts them to the monmouthcountyvotes.com website. Now that official results have been posted, they show that Weber will be taking a seat on the dais alongside Liu, not Santhana, after Liusurpassed him by three votesas of Tuesday, 2,082 to 2,079.There were 17 write-ins. The updated results also show scales tipping in Holmdel Township for Republican candidate Chiung-Yin Cheng Liu. She and incumbent Republican Mayor Eric Hinds were down in the polls on election night, with Cathy Weber and Prakash Santhana leading the way on Independent tickets. “There’s always a town in Monmouth County that is close and oftentimes we have a recount. Sometimes the results change and sometimes they stay the same,” said Hanlon. Official results were posted Tuesday, Nov. 12, by the Monmouth County Clerk’s Office, which now includes late mail-in and provisional ballots. Candidates have until Friday, Nov. 22 to ask for a recount, according to Christine Giordano Hanlon, the county clerk. According to Hanlon, there are three offices involved in the election process in Monmouth County. The Superintendent of Elections Office is responsible for counting out provisional ballots and determining whether or not the sender is eligible to vote in the county, without opening the envelopes. The office counted over 3,000 provisional ballots this season, Hanlon said. “I stayed strong and that is very difficult. I’m so proud of myself. I reached it and passed the finish line,” Liu said with enthusiasm Wednesday morning. She expressed appreciation for her campaign team and for the voters of Holmdel who believe in her and said she is very excited about the results. “The closeness of the race speaks to multiple factors,” said Broullon. “We are literally living a civics lesson right now. All elections matter and all voices should be heard.” Election officials denote their findings on the outside of the ballot envelope. Those findings are then given to the Monmouth County Board of Elections for counting. The board makes the final determination on whether or not the ballot is valid and decides what will be counted and what will be voided. The board of elections also counted late mail-in ballots both on Election Day and Friday, Nov. 8, and made determinations of write-in candidates. She said close elections are normal in the county and that year after year, some elections come down to fewer than five votes. “It is not unusual to have a close election in Monmouth County. We have 53 municipalities and it happens regularly,” said Hanlon. In Highlands, Councilwoman Carolyn Broullon defeated the incumbent mayor of the town, Rick O’Neil, by one vote, 603 to 602. There were four write-ins.