A.J. incumbents rule election night - East Valley Tribune: East Valley Local News

A.J. incumbents rule election night

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Posted: Tuesday, March 10, 2009 8:59 pm | Updated: 12:27 am, Sat Oct 8, 2011.

It appeared that voters handily supported all four incumbents in the Apache Junction election Tuesday night. Equally, five incumbents targeted in a recall election showed a political tour de force, with each easily fending off challengers.

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With all polling stations reporting, unofficial results showed that in the three-way mayoral race, incumbent John Insalaco was far ahead, with about 60 percent of the vote. The seats of three council members showed incumbents Douglas Coleman, Richard Dietz and R.E. Eck Jr. comfortably ahead.

Unique to the city was the separate recall election, which the mayor and four council members faced along side of the primary election. Results from that election showed Insalaco far ahead for mayor, and incumbent council members Robin Barker, Dietz, Eck, and Jeff Serdy leading.

Candidates must win 50 percent, plus one vote, of the total ballots cast to win a seat outright. It appears the incumbents did just that, avoiding a May runoff.

If Insalaco had been defeated in the recall election, he would have given up his mayoral seat until June when his new term would begin.

In the mayoral primary, Insalaco faced Dave Waldron and Noel T. Benoist. In the recall, Insalaco faced Benoist and Elliott E. Fisher.

Benoist said in two years he would "definitely" run again.

"Oh-boy, I tell you what: This is a crazy election," Insalaco said before hearing the election results.

Standing in Dirtwater Springs Restaurant on Apache Trail Boulevard, Insalaco said a tough fight was finally over.

"It was a landslide, all the way around," he said. "I'm gonna have me a beer."

In a separate ballot hot point, Home Rule or Proposition 100, was passed. Under the option, residents and the City Council make annual budget decisions for their city "at home" rather than using a state-imposed limitation, according to the city. The limitation would have caused the city to cute one-third of the general fund budget over four years, amounting to $39.8 million, according to the city.

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