Winners emerged yesterday in a close mayoral race in Rhode Island and a congressional contest in California.

A recount enabled former Providence, R.I., mayor and convicted felon Vincent A. "Buddy" Cianci Jr. to reclaim the office he was forced from in 1984.

The state Board of Elections, after an afternoon recount of voting machines from Tuesday's election, declared Cianci the winner. The figures were not immediately clear, but it appeared to be by 246 or 248 votes over fellow Republican-turned-independent Frederick Lippitt.

Cianci's 10 years in office became some of the most corrupt in recent city history, with 22 people connected to the administration convicted of various crimes. Cianci never was charged in connection with those crimes.

In California, Democratic Rep. Douglas Bosco of Sebastopol acknowledged he had lost a bid for a fifth term to Republican developer Frank Riggs. Bosco trailed Riggs by 1,973 votes with an unknown number of absentee ballots still uncounted, but an aide said the congressman didn't believe those votes would change the outcome.

Democratic Rep. Jim Bates trailed Republican challenger Randy Cunningham by 982 votes in California's 44th District, with an unknown number of absentee ballots still to be counted.