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Upham elected for another term

It was a race to the finish for the County of St. Paul municipal election on Oct. 21. But after the final count, and subsequent recount, came in, it was incumbent Steve Upham who took back the position of reeve.

It was a race to the finish for the County of St. Paul municipal election on Oct. 21. But after the final count, and subsequent recount, came in, it was incumbent Steve Upham who took back the position of reeve.

At one point, as polling stations were calling in their numbers on Oct. 21, only five votes separated candidates Ray Danyluk and Upham, with Danyluk leading the way. Then, with just two polling stations left, Upham took the lead and held on.

The final count for Reeve at Large was Upham at 1,104 votes; Danyluk at 1,062; and Ben Dyck at 209. A recount was done later in the week, after it was found that one of the polling stations did not fill out the paperwork correctly, but the results remained the same.

“I called for a recount due to a possible administrative error in one of the polling stations,” said the County of St. Paul’s returning officer Calvin Leckie, following the recount. He added that because the results were close, “it was decided to recount all ballots from all polling stations.”

The only change in numbers was a slight variation in the number of votes counted for Division 5. The final vote kept incumbent Frank Sloan in the lead, with 343 votes. Candidate Donna Hanson finished with 226 votes.

In Division 4, incumbent Maxine Fodness also kept her seat on council with a total of 343 votes. Candidate Dave Neary had 112 votes.

In by acclamation were: Division 1 Coun. Glen Ockerman; Division 2 Coun. Dwight Dach, Division 3 Coun. Cliff Martin; and the county’s newest member Division 6 Coun. Laurent Amyotte.

Voter turnout for the 2013 municipal election with the County of St. Paul was 51 per cent.

“It’s a good feeling,” said Upham, following the recount. He adds that last term, winning his seat as reeve was a win for the community, whereas this time it felt more like “a personal win.”

Only 42 votes separated Upham and Danyluk, and according to the voting results, much of Danyluk’s support came from the east part of the county. Upham says that because both councillors in Division 1 and 2 were acclaimed, he believes ratepayers must still be happy with how the county is doing things.

Upham says he is looking forward to continuing work on major projects, such as the Elk Point/St. Paul waterline, and a proposed Ashmont/St. Paul waterline.

Catching up on road projects that were not completed this year will also be a priority moving forward, says Upham. Overall, he says he is looking forward to helping direct the County of St. Paul with a long-term vision.

Polling station results show a close race between Upham and Danyluk. Advance polls in Elk Point were in favour of Danyluk, while advance polls in St. Paul were slightly in favour of Upham.

The Boscombe polling station saw Upham garner a few more votes than Danyluk, and the Boyne Lake polling station also saw Upham garner the majority of the votes in that area. Cork Hall saw Upham get double the number of votes as Danyluk.

On the east side of the county, the Elk Point Seniors Centre station showed an overwhelming support for Danyluk, who received 222 votes in that station, compared to Upham’s 60 votes.

Ferguson Flats, Heinsburg Seniors Centre, Lac Bellevue Hall, and Stoney Lake also saw Danyluk garner more support than Upham.

Support for Upham was shown at the Mallaig Seniors Centre, with Upham receiving 84 votes to Danyluk’s 41 votes. McRae also voted in favour of Upham, and St. Lina Hall gave Upham another push with 106 votes to Danyluk’s 23. St. Vincent also saw Upham with more votes than Danyluk,

With Danyluk ahead by 62 votes, it was the last two polling stations to be called in on Monday night that made the difference. The St. Paul Legion station called in with 266 votes for Danyluk and 319 for Upham.

And with only nine votes separating the two candidates, the Ashmont Legion polling station pushed Upham ahead, with 113 votes, to Danyluk’s 62, resulting in a difference of only 42 votes.

Janice Huser

About the Author: Janice Huser

Janice Huser has been with the St. Paul Journal since 2006. She is a graduate of the SAIT print media journalism program, is originally from St. Paul and has a passion for photography.
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