NEW HAVEN — The ballots have been cast in the Town of New Haven, and for the most part, voters seem satisfied with the status quo.
Four of the five incumbent council members were re-elected to their posts in Tuesday’s election, according to the unofficial tally. Getting the top council vote at 125 was incumbent Amy Ferguson Gordon, while Jessica Howard, also an incumbent, and newcomer Vinson “Smitty” Jarrell garnered 121 votes each. Rounding out the council will be incumbents Ken Vickers, with 120 votes, and Jim Elias, with 92 votes.
Only four votes separated Elias and the number six candidate, Jeffrey Zerkle, who got 88 votes. With only three provisional ballots, however, Elias is secure in the number five position.
Longtime council member Sarah Gibbs was the only incumbent not to regain her seat. Gibbs, who has served on council for the past 34 years, received 81 votes.
Other council candidates and their vote count were Elnora Weaver, 58; Timothy Stone, 32; and the late Frances Weaver Taylor, 14. Taylor passed away recently and her name remained on the ballot. Had she won the election, the new administration would have appointed a council member after they took office July 1.
The council seats were the only real contest in the election, with only one candidate each vying for mayor and recorder. Charles R. Yonker will take over the mayor’s position after receiving 146 votes. Incumbent Recorder Roberta Hysell will remain in her position after getting 178 votes.
Yonker said he is looking forward to both the opportunity and the challenge ahead as the new mayor. He added he has been spending the past two to three months working closely with the present administration and employees, learning and observing.
“I look forward to working with the council and the town employees,” Yonker said. “I already have some ideas that I feel will be fruitful.”
More than 200 residents voted in the election, including 99-year-old Margaret Flowers, who told poll workers she would be turning 100 on July 15. When contacted, Mrs. Flowers said she feels it is important to vote.
“I always find the time to vote, and try to get the right ones in that will do the job,” Flowers said. “If we don’t go to express our feelings, we can’t complain.” Flowers added she was also a former poll worker in elections.
The present council will meet Thursday to canvass the ballots and make the tallies official.