Ingalls, Threshie win seats on council: Owens returns, McCormack barely misses | SierraSun.com

Ingalls, Threshie win seats on council: Owens returns, McCormack barely misses

Christina Nelson

Photo by Colin FisherExercising your democratic rights. A voter takes to the polls at the recreation center polling place.

Some thought the town council race was done after absentee ballots were counted.

But last night’s election, like the 2000 presidential race, proved that relying on statistics isn’t always the way to go.

Beth Ingalls, a mother of three and environmental advocate, won the election with 1,997 votes.

With only three-tenths of a percent between the top two candidates, Incumbent Ted Owens trailed Ingalls by 30 votes. Planning commissioner and architect Craig Threshie took the third open seat on the council.

“I felt in my heart that I had a real chance,” Ingalls said. “When it finally happened, I just couldn’t speak.”

After hours of checking the Nevada County Elections Web site and Channel 6, preliminary results for the Truckee Town Council race were posted after 10:30 p.m. Tuesday night.

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Initial absentee ballot counts indicated Owens, incumbent Don McCormack and planning commissioner Craig Threshie were the top three candidates.

With nine candidates this year, the election proved a litmus test of the town’s “personality” and residents’ views of the local decision-making process.

“I think the irony of this whole thing is that the town does a pretty good job of maintaining balance on the council,” Owens said. “The town has changed tremendously in two years. Going into this I didn’t have a clear picture of what the electorate was, and I think that’s going to continue.”

Threshie said he hopes to immediately open lines of communication between the five council members to see where each stands and recognize each member’s priorities.

“I think there’s a strong contingent in town that has a lot of environmental concerns that need to be addressed. I anticipate that we’re going to be doing just that,” Threshie said.

After the hangover of three months of campaigning ended, life went on for all nine candidates.

Some of the candidates that won’t be serving on the council will now focus more on work or their families, while others said they would remain involved in local politics.

“I will not quit being involved,” said candidate Joel Quist. “I’m going to get involved in the general plan update.”

Quist, who said he hopes to focus more on his business, felt that 800 people in Truckee made a statement when they voted for him.

“There’s 800 people in town who are willing to support a blue-collar worker,” he said.

Candidate Kenn Rieders said he also felt voters made a statement on Tuesday.

“Well, I took a look at the results as of 11 o’clock last night … and I’m very happy to see that we have a change in Truckee,” he said.

“I think that a lot of people in the town needed someone to get behind that they felt was genuine and motivated by a desire to make positive change,” Ingalls said, adding that she couldn’t thank her supporters enough.

Incumbent Don McCormack and candidates Nikki Riley, Julie Cooley-Rieders and Steve McCann were not available for comment before the Sierra Sun’s deadline.

New town council members will be seated in December, after election results have been certified.

Although all election results are unofficial until all absentee ballots are counted and the 28-day canvassing period is complete, Nevada County Clerk-Recorder Lorraine Jewett-Burdick said it’s unlikely that the council results will change.

“[Results] could change based on the 2,082 [absentee ballots] dropped off at the polls,” she said.