It was a sea of bowed heads over Blackberries and iPhones Tuesday night in Irvington Village Hall, as local Democrats and Republicans watched in anticipation as all seven precincts' results in the charged local elections were posted.
In the three-way race for two open positions, Democrat Mark Gilliland won a seat on the Village Board of Trustees with a comfortable 81-vote victory over his closest rival, incumbent Republican Walter Montgomery.
Montgomery will maintain his seat.
With all seven districts reporting, here are the unofficial results:
- Mark Gilliland: 635
- Walter Montgomery: 554
- Rick Rasulo: 446
The race for two seats on the board was for a couple of months. However, it heated up slightly in the last week when the as part of his fight against the Continuum assisted-living facility proposed for South Broadway.
Montgomery was the veteran in the race, with five years of service on the village board. Rasulo was appointed last year to fill the spot Brian Smith left when he became mayor. Montgomery and Rasulo are Republicans, Gilliland a Democrat.
Though Rasulo will not return to the village government in his official capacity, both Smith and Gilliland thanked him profusely for his work in the village, especially with the Recreation Department.
Smith also congratulated all three candidates for running tasteful campaigns, saying they highlighted their own positive attributes, rather than disparaging their opponents.
Though Gilliland has been extremely active in the Irvington community even without an official title, he said Tuesday that he was excited, "to offer my perspective at the beginning of discussions rather than during comments' sections in the middle. I hope to build a community coalition."
The Irvington Board of Trustees will now be comprised of three Democrats: Connie Kehoe, Ken Bernstein and Mark Gilliland and two Republicans: Mayor Brian Smith and Walter Montgomery.
With major development projects, such as the proposed assisted living community off of Broadway and the new zoning law for the waterfront area, both candidates said they felt that their contributions to the conversation would be crucial to how the Village fares going forward.
"Voter turnout was tremendous today," said elections inspector Leona Faustini, who has served in the role for three years.
Trustees in Irvington serve 2-year terms and are paid $2,400 annually.