Williams captures a third term, besting opponent by wide margin
November 4, 2009
Mayor Dana Williams, relying on the populist appeal that he has enjoyed throughout his political career, soundly won re-election to a third term on Tuesday night, defeating Brad Olch, his predecessor as mayor, by more than a 2-1 margin.
Williams won 1,263 votes, or 69.1 percent, to Olch’s 566 votes, or 30.9 percent, according to preliminary numbers tallied by City Hall’s election officer. Williams was in the Park City Council chambers with his wife, Lisa, and two campaign workers as the votes were tabulated.
"I think, actually, people feel generally comfortable and safe with the way the city is run," Williams said, adding, "I think people realize that there is a level of civility that we’ve tried to create here."
Williams acknowledged, though, that City Hall must better publicize its efforts to spur the local economy. Olch was critical of the mayor’s handling of the economy during his campaign appearances.
Meanwhile, Cindy Matsumoto and Alex Butwinski captured the two Park City Council spots on the ballot. The contest was close between the two winners and the third-place finisher, John Stafsholt. Mark Blue finished well behind the top three.
The preliminary numbers in the City Council campaign are:
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The City Council winners will be sworn into office in early January. Williams will take his oath again at the same time. City Hall’s election official, Cindy LoPiccolo, did not immediately release details such as the percentage of registered voters who cast ballots on Tuesday and the results from each precinct.
There were tense moments inside the City Council chambers early in the counting as the poll workers briefly wondered whether the tabulation was accurate. LoPiccolo said afterward the reports from the Eccles Center polling place had been printed in a different format than those at the Marsac Building. She said the poll workers conducted a precinct-by-precinct count of the Eccles Center votes and then rechecked the results three times.
Stafsholt, who was in the room as the votes were counted, appeared exasperated as the poll workers discussed the early discrepancies in the tally.
The overall numbers could change slightly once the approximately 40 provisional and absentee ballots that were not counted on Tuesday are added to the totals. There are not enough of those, though, to change the order of the finishers.