Recount hands Silt mayor’s seat to Richel by 1 vote
official silt election results After recount
Bryan Fleming - 131
Keith Richel - 192
Jay Barner - 191
Jerry Seifert - 261
Mark Anderson - 57
Samantha Alexander - 315
Kyle Knott - 238
Chris Classen - 191
Bobby Hays - 97
Al White - 126
Justin Brintnall - 159
T.J. Tucker - 246
Keith Richel is the new mayor of Silt, following a Monday recount of the April 3 returns after canvassed results turned up some discrepancies last week.
A close race between Richel and Jay Barner in the three-way race for mayor ended up turning in favor of Richel following the recount. Richel edged out Barner 192 to 191, according to Town Clerk Sheila McIntyre.
Though Barner had a one-vote lead over Richel after the canvassed results came back on Friday, a double recount on Monday confirmed it was Richel who won the mayor’s seat. The third candidate, Bryan Fleming, came in with 131 votes.
Richel, who is currently one of the six trustees on the town board, is set to replace Rick Aluise, who served a single four-year term as mayor before deciding not to seek reelection this spring.
“I look forward to representing the citizens of Silt for the next four years in the capacity of mayor instead of trustee,” Richel said Monday night. “I really appreciate the support the town has shown me in the past in making me trustee and by still supporting me with this vote.”
Richel said he thinks he and Barner came down to such a close vote because they were close on ideas for moving the town forward. But he said it might have just come down to his experience.
“I look forward to helping economic development in this town move along and hopefully get some more stores and new housing into town,” Richel said.
While Barner was disappointed by the results, “if that’s what the vote count is, that’s what it is,” he said.
“I wish Richel the best and hope he heard the people and what they want,” he added.
The recounted votes came in the same as the canvassed results for four trustee candidates receiving the most votes. Samantha Alexander, Jerry Seifert, T.J. Tucker and Kyle Knott will join Richel on revamped Silt Board of Trustees.
Unofficial results the night of the election had Chris Classen as the winner of one of those seats. However, McIntyre said a “mathematical error” was discovered that resulted in Tucker instead being among the top four.
Current Trustee Dina Prieto will serve on the board for another two years. The board will now need to find a replacement to fill Richel’s trustee seat. His term was up in 2020. The board can elect to appoint someone to fill the seat for the next two years, or put it to a special election.
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