LINCOLN, Maine — A Republican with 15 years of town leadership experience will rejoin the town council after winning a recount that initially had her losing her write-in campaign by a single vote, officials said Monday.
Dede Trask, who last served on the council in the mid-1990s and said she was chairwoman for about 10 of her 15 years, defeated incumbent Shaun Drinkwater on a recount Thursday, 319 votes to 304. Drinkwater had served a three-year term after losing an election bid in 2008.
Another 243 votes were listed as blanks, vote results show.
Unofficial results from the Nov. 5 election had Drinkwater defeating Trask, 308 votes to 307. Challenger Christopher D. Stevens led council candidates with 375 votes and incumbent Curt Ring was re-elected with 351, results show.
Trask said she didn’t know why the recount results varied so much from the initial.
“I have no idea but something wasn’t right that’s for sure,” Trask said Monday. “His were all machine counted and mine were hand counted” because they were handwritten by voters.
“I am not going to make a judgment or make an opinion. I don’t know what happened. I wasn’t there” for the first vote tabulation, Trask said.
Trask said she thought Town Clerk Shelly Crosby “did an excellent job in the recount. It was very difficult. It was 14 new people she had to instruct and she did an excellent job.”
Trask said she was not interested in returning to town government until her most recent property tax bill increased about 15 percent. Her campaign lasted about three weeks. She said she believes that residents’ confidence in town government “has never been lower.”
“People are so concerned and from my reputation on the town council before, they know that” their questions would be answered, Trask said.