PORTLAND — Portland’s City Council elected a new mayor tonight, but it was not the candidate who was expected to serve in the largely ceremonial post.

District 4 councilor Cheryl Leeman, who had garnered support from a majority of the City Council prior to Monday’s vote, withdrew after being nominated, telling her colleagues it was important to maintain continuity in what promises to be a tough budget year.

She then nominated Nicholas Mavodones Jr., the city’s current mayor, to serve a second, consecutive one year term.

Leeman said Mavodones had done a terrific job of representing the city and said he should be allowed to continue in that role until November when voters will be asked to elect a mayor.

The City Council voted 7-0 to elect Mavodones.

“I’m surprised. I was looking forward to serving with councilor Leeman. She would have made a great mayor,” Mavodones said.

This will be the fourth time that Mavodones has served as Portland’s mayor.