Chandler council incumbents safe; run-off likely for 3rd seat - East Valley Tribune: East Valley Local News

Chandler council incumbents safe; run-off likely for 3rd seat

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Posted: Tuesday, August 24, 2010 8:02 pm | Updated: 2:54 pm, Thu Aug 26, 2010.

Incumbents Jeff Weninger and Trinity Donovan won re-election to the City Council outright in Tuesday's primary election, while a run-off may be needed for the remaining position.

Former Councilman Kevin Hartke is leading for the third spot. To get elected outright, he needed half as many votes as those cast for the mayor, and he was several hundred votes short of that.

Hartke said he expects a run-off. He'd face former Councilwoman Donna Wallace, who narrowly edged out Scott Taylor. Terry Roe came in at sixth place.

Weninger said he was surprised to get the largest number of votes. He figures voters supported him because of his voting record.

"I think my message has mainly been fiscal responsibility, taking care of our core services - the core responsibility of the local government - and getting out of the way of the private sector," said Weniger, a restaurant owner.

Donovan attributed her strong showing at the polls to having a grassroots campaign.

"I stood at a poll all day today and I heard a lot of good feedback and they appreciated my being on the council, my community-mindedness," Donavan said.

Hartke said he did well because he ran a positive campaign that focused on the city's strengths.

"I think people are looking for leadership that's looking ahead and how to get there, and I think that's what I was representing," Hartke said.

In choosing Weninger and Donovan, voters chose candidates who represented starkly different views on some key issues. Weninger was critical of the new City Hall and Arizona Avenue improvements, while Donovan supports the projects.

Hartke said it's not a surprise voters would back candidates with differing views.

"I think Jeff and Trinity, despite their differences, have both added a lot to the city and as incumbents, they have both earned the people's trust," Hartke said.

With early votes and all 68 precincts counted, Weninger had the most votes at 21.7 percent. The other totals were Donovan at 20.4 percent, Hartke at 17.7 percent, Wallace at 16 percent, Taylor at 15 percent and Roe at 9 percent.

Also Tuesday, former Mayor Jay Tibshraeny won his old post back in an uncontested race.

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