November 7, 2013

Three of seven Saco Council races likely to face recounts

One race to be recounted had a two-vote margin.

By Gillian Graham
Staff Writer

Saco officials will likely hold recounts on three of seven City Council races, a rarity in a town where city councilors often run unopposed for office.

They will be the first recounts since 2009, when one was requested in the Ward 1 race that featured the same line up of candidates as Tuesday’s election.

City Clerk Michele Hughes said incumbent Marston Lovell, who lost the Ward 7 seat to newcomer Nathan Johnston by two votes, already has formally requested a recount. Cynthia Chadwick-Granger of Ward 1 and Roger Gay of Ward 2 have made verbal requests but need to submit those in writing by 5 p.m. Nov. 13.

Chadwick-Granger finished second in a three-way race for the Ward 1 seat, which is being vacated by unsuccessful mayoral candidate David Tripp. David Precourt appears to have won the seat with 247 votes. Chadwick-Granger finished with 233 votes and former City Councilor Margaret Mills received 219 votes.

In 2009, Chadwick-Granger requested a recount after she lost to Mills, Hughes said. Mills remained the winner after the recount.

Gay, who made his first run for local office, received 281 votes for the Ward 2 seat. Incumbent Leslie Smith Jr., the city’s longest serving councilor, received 309 votes.

Lovell, who has represented Ward 1 since 2007, appears to have lost the seat to Johnston by two votes. Johnston, who lost to Lovell in the 2011 election, is the son of outgoing Mayor Mark Johnston and Regional School Unit 23 school board member Beth Johnston.

Hughes said the recounts will be held as soon as the week of Nov. 18 as long as the city’s ballots are not needed for recounts on state ballot questions. City councilors are scheduled to be sworn in on Dec. 2.

Gillian Graham can be reached at 791-6315 or:

Twitter: @grahamgillian

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