Burkett landslides back into mayor’s chair
By Gisele Winton Sarvis Orillia Packet & Times
Severn Mayor Mike Burkett was elected to a second term in the township, garnering about five times the number of votes over his lone contender, former mayor Phil Sled.
“It tells me that the past council did very well and the people were very happy. I hope we can do just a good a job, if not better,” said Burkett, who got 3,051 votes to Sled’s 565.
The new seven-member council will look very much like the last one, with only one change in the lineup.
Donald Westcott, 64, of Washago, was elected to council for the first time, representing Ward 5. He received 618 votes.
“I’m overwhelmed with the support I got. I went door to door and travelled every street,” he said.
Deputy Mayor Judith Cox was acclaimed.
“It makes you feel like everyone likes you and you’ve done a good job,” she said.
When she was first elected in 1994 as councillor for Ward 2, there were 14 other candidates and she won by only 14 votes. She has been deputy mayor since 2000.
Jane Dunlop was also re-elected for her second term in Ward 2, with 600 votes, almost six times the number for her one competitor.
“I’m really happy because I have worked hard for the last four years and it shows because my electors were more than happy to put me back and I have lots of plans for the next four years. I’m eager to start tomorrow morning,” Dunlop said Monday night.
Ward 1 Coun. Mark Taylor was acclaimed. He’s been a councillor since 1999.
“I want to make sure I do a good job for the ward and the township,” he said.
Former Orillia mayor Ron Stevens was re-elected to Ward 4 in Severn, garnering double the votes of contender Karen Marriott. He was first elected in 1978 and has been a municipal politician for 36 years.
“I love it. I love being a councillor best of all,” said Stevens.
Ian Chrichton was re-elected in Ward 3 with 505 votes.