Too close to call: Brownsdale, Mapleview mayoral races may require recounts

Published 11:18 am Wednesday, November 7, 2012

When it comes to the small-town elections, one or two votes really can make all the difference.

In Brownsdale, incumbent Mayor David Pike received just one more vote than challenger Jeff Foster, 130-129. And in Mapleview, incumbent Arnie Johnson will again be mayor, as he defeated Larry Naatz 51-47. The close-knit races beg the question of a recount, especially in Brownsdale, where Carol Larick also nabbed 100 votes.

As of late Tuesday night, Pike still seemed a little unsure of the results and was simply waiting to see what would happen.

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According to officials in the Minnesota State Secretary’s Office, a city candidate can request a recount that will be paid for by his or her city if the margin is less than half a percent. The candidate must file for the recount within seven days of completion of a canvassing period. Foster was not immediately available to say if he would request a recount. According to the ballots, Foster trailed Pike by just .27 percent of the vote. Those who trail by more than half a percent must pay for a recount on their own accord.

Foster knew the race would be close, as he lost the last mayoral election to Pike by roughly 20 votes. Both Pike and Foster pointed to infrastructure as main concerns in Brownsdale and would like to se the recently revived business scene keep growing.

In Mapleview, Johnson, now serving his third term in a row, said he hopes to expose some financial issues that have dwelled for years. He said the issue of annexation by Austin may be a little overblown; however, he understands why people talk about it as Mapleview’s finances could have forced that during the past several years. He says that is slowly changing.

“We’re coming out of the hole, but we are kind of flat-lining and don’t have a lot to waste,” he said.

Still, Johnson said the city is battling costs from a previous highway project, tornado damage, loss of revenue from rental properties and the threat of losing Local Government Aid, to name a few.