INDIAN RIVER COUNTY — Nearly all votes are in and there has been an upset in Vero Beach, though all Sebastian incumbents will be returned to their dais seats.
Vero Beach Mayor Dick Winger was returned to the Council, but his fellow incumbent, Amelia Graves, was not. She was edged out by challenger Harry Howle by a mere 50 votes.
Recounts need a margin of 0.5 percent or less. Howle beat Graves by 1.09 percent.
Howle celebrated at home with his wife Heather and a few of his supporters.
“It was a hard campaign for two years, I had a lot of help and I appreciate everybody who helped me these past two years,” Howle said, adding that it’s time to get to work representing the will of the residents of Vero.
During the campaign, Howle said the incumbents had made decisions that were contrary to the will of the voters, especially on matters related to Vero electric. All three challengers criticized the council for raising taxes this year as well.
Winger could not be reached at home or on his mobile phone for comment Tuesday night after returns came in.
Sebastian incumbents Andrea Coy, Richard Gillmor and Bob McPartlan handily won their race against challenger Damien Gilliams.
Almost 1,214 absentee ballots were cast. Nearly 3,300 ballots were cast on Election Day.
With all ballots counted, including provisionals, the following are the final results:
- Andrea Coy – 1,475
- Damien Gilliams – 870
- Richard Gillmor – 1,534
- Bob McPartlan – 1,550
- Harry Howle – 1,074
- Laura Moss – 948
- Dick Winger – 1,178
- Brian Heady – 346
- Amelia Graves – 1,024