MARBLE - Marble Mayor Tony Petrocco narrowly avoided being recalled from office Tuesday, by a margin of four votes.
According to Town Clerk Karen Mulhall, the mail-only recall election generated a total of 64 votes - 30 citizens voting to kick the mayor out of office, but 34 voting to keep him on the job.
Interestingly, Mulhall reported, the sole candidate to replace the mayor, had he been recalled, got fewer votes than did the recall effort itself.
Jason Rusby, whose name was on the ballot as the possible new mayor, received 29 votes, according to Mulhall's official tally.
The ballots were counted at the office of Carbondale attorney Tim Whitsitt, Mulhall said, because she needed a secure address for receipt of the mailed ballots and no such location could be found in Marble.
Mulhall said she told Petrocco the results after the ballots had been counted, and relayed, "He's thrilled, of course, that he wasn't recalled."
But, she added, Petrocco was less than thrilled over the recall itself, which he maintained was a waste of town funds.
Mulhall estimated that the election will end up costing the town approximately $3,000, including the cost of printing the ballots and mailing them out.
Still unknown, she said, is whether there will be a request for a recount due to the close vote.
If there is a recount, she said, the party requesting it will be required to pay the cost, which she estimated at less than $100.
A recount must be demanded within a week, Mulhall said.
The recall effort was based on allegations that the mayor was involved in improprieties regarding a land-use issue in town.