Voters in Digby town chose experience.
They opted for all five incumbent candidates and a former councillor to govern the town for the next four years.
“I’ve been thinking about what that means too,” said Mayor Ben Cleveland Saturday night, Oct. 20. The mayor won his seat by acclamation. “I think it says that people are satisfied with the team at the moment and they like the direction the two councils are headed in.”
Incumbent Danny Harvieux received 536 votes, top of the heap in the 12-candidate race for the six council seats.
“I’m really happy with those results,” says Harvieux. “People told me they thought we were doing a good job and since we were in the middle of several important projects, they told me jokingly we had four more years to get stuff done.”
Harvieux says the doctor shortage and the tidal service facility will be his priorities.
“And I want to keep a real close eye on our budget this time so we don’t have any surprises next year,” he said.
Harvieux said when asked that, yes some people mentioned to him his success in attracting the World Junior C Hockey games.
“That might have helped but I try hard, I listen to people and I work hard,” says Harvieux.
Brian Manzer finished among the top four but says he didn’t push very hard this time.
“I wanted to leave it up to the people,” said Manzer Saturday night. “It was their decision, if they wanted to put me in there, if they thought I had done a good job so far.”
He says he wants to see the sewer project completed and he is getting right to work on the doctor shortage. He says he has a meeting already lined up with Hubert d’Entremont, site manager at the Digby Regional Hospital this week.
“It’s a provincial responsibility,” says Manzer. “But we are dealing with it.”
Bob Handspiker isn’t technically an incumbent but he is a former councillor. He lost last election in 2008 in the mayoral race to Ben Cleveland.
“I’m glad to be back,” said Handspiker Saturday night. “I enjoyed it when I was here and I want to see what I can do for the community.”
Jean Brittain retuned to council as the only female for the second term in a row, despite six women candidates on the ballot.
“I don’t know if gender was an issue,” said Brittain moments after the results were announced at Digby town hall. “I think it is more a case of name recognition for the incumbents and for Bob, he was on council before so that could be name recognition as well.”
Brittain says everyone ran good above board campaigns and she was happy to see such a wide spectrum of the population represented on the ballot.
“We had young people right up to people like me… and Bob, I guess he’s older,” said Brittain with a laugh.
Danny Harvieux – 536
Mike Bartlett – 502
Peter Turnbull – 493
Brian Manzer – 478
Jean Brittain – 386
Bob Handspiker - 318
Joan O’Neil - 311
Maureen Hattie – 263
Margaret Gray – 221
Gloria Robicheau – 150
Raye Newman – 128
Lori Isles Precesky - 112