GLENDALE — Although challengers mounted campaigns based on discontent with City Hall, voters stuck with the incumbent mayor and three councilors.
“Apparently, many of the folks here in Glendale are happy with the way things are going,” said Mayor Fred Jensen, who received 60 percent of the vote in returns Tuesday.
Jensen cruised to re-election over Lucille Martin, who received 25 percent of the vote. A third candidate, Annette Merrill, died Oct. 25 of a heart attack at the age of 57 after speaking at a candidates forum. Her death occurred after ballots were mailed. She received 16 percent of the vote.
Jensen received 147 votes to Martin’s 62 votes and Merrill’s 40 votes.
For Position 1 on the council, incumbent Karen Mehl received 61 percent of the vote to cruise to re-election over Shannon Merrill, the daughter of Annette Merrill.
For Position 2, incumbent Pauline Eells won 53 percent of the vote against challenger Shirley Miller.
For Position 5, incumbent Bill Boal garnered 57 percent of the vote to top challenger Kayrene Loggins.
Jensen, who was elected to a third two-year term, said the results validated the council’s efforts to improve the city, particularly its four-block downtown.
The council’s stance against allowing a multi-family residence downtown generated some heat, he said, but the council wants to preserve the area for businesses in hopes of revitalizing the town’s economy.
“My thinking is it’s a small percentage of people who are unhappy,” he said. “If we had a downtown area with businesses people would shop here and people would get this town back on its feet again.”
Martin said she hoped she and other challengers at least shook up City Hall a little.
“I’m really glad I ran. I’ll do it again, maybe,” she said. “I hope the mayor and the city realize not all of the people are happy with how things are going.”
Martin said she thinks voters stuck, at least for now, with the people they knew.
“I think we did open up some eyes. There are choices,” she said. “Maybe next time we’ll have more time to get out there. It doesn’t have to be same old, same old.”
Jensen said he embraces heightened interest in City Hall. He said City Council meetings once attracted fewer than a handful of residents, but there has been enough controversy to change that.
“Now, we actually have a full house, and it’s pretty neat,” he said.
• City Editor Don Jenkins can be reached at 541-957-4201 or firstname.lastname@example.org.