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Published on Thursday, November 16, 2006

Burton wins on promise of change

By Jody Sanderson – Oakville Today

The people of Oakville have been clamouring for change, and that’s exactly what they got Monday night as two-time mayoral candidate Rob Burton decisively ended Ann Mulvale’s 18-year reign as mayor.

With a total of 15,120 votes cast in his favour, Burton captured 38 per cent of the vote, compared to Mulvale’s 34 per cent. Early polls had Mulvale in the lead, but the tide turned at approximately 9:15 pm, carrying Burton to victory with over 1600 additional votes.

It was a far cry from the 28 votes which separated the two candidates in 2003 and led to an acrimonious recount.

An elated Rob Burton, who savoured the win at his campaign headquarters on Ford Drive with family and volunteers, looked exhausted when he announced that the first thing he was going to do was sleep.

“I’m going to try not to be mayor until I really am mayor,” said Burton. “We had a brilliant plan, that was executed brilliantly. We never had a bad day.”

Burton’s commitment to ‘People First Planning’ resonated strongly with voters who have seen unprecedented growth in their community in the past three years.

Tom Adams, the Ward 6 Local Councillor who trounced his opponent for the Regional seat and endorsed Burton for Mayor agreed, telling Oakville Today, “What I heard at the doors was that people want us to control growth, bottom line.”

Mulvale was accompanied by son Robert, and surrounded by supporters and volunteers when she arrived at Town Hall at about 10 pm.

Greeted by spontaneous applause, Mulvale immediately addressed the media.

“We knew all along that we could be first or second,” said Mulvale when asked about the campaign.

“We expected the Stoate and Wright campaigns to split the vote which is what happened. The Stoate, Wright, Mulvale campaigns had a similar message and mayor-elect Burton will have to look at what his mandate is.”

Mulvale publicly thanked her supporters and volunteers, some who have been with her since 1978. She said she planned to get some sleep and is optimistic about what the future holds.

Change occurred at the councillor level as well. New faces around the table include Max Khan, Local Councillor Ward 6, Roger Lapworth, Local Councillor Ward 4, Alan Johnstone, Regional Councillor Ward 1 and Mary Chapin, Local Councillor Ward 3. Holding onto their seats were Jeff Knoll, Regional Councillor Ward 5, Marc Grant, Local Councillor Ward 5, Tom Adams who jumped from Local to Regional Council in Ward 6 and Fred Oliver, Regional Councillor Ward 2. Acclaimed were Cathy Duddeck, Local Councillor Ward 2, Local Councillor Ralph Robinson Ward 1, Keith Bird, Regional Councillor Ward 3 and Alan Elgar, Regional Councillor Ward 4.

Former Liberal MP and Conservative Speaker of the Provincial Legislature, municipal newcomer Gary Carr trounced his competitors, which included former Halton Region CAO Brent Marshall.

Halton District School Board Trustees include Don Vrooman Wards 1 & 2, Philippa Ellis, Ward 3, Kathryn Bateman-Olmstead, Ward 4 and Bruce Jones, Wards 5 & 6.

Ed. Viana, Pauline Houlahan, Anthony Danko and Alice Anne LeMay were elected at large as Halton District Catholic School Board Trustees. The total voter turnout increased from 2003. Out of 110,890 eligible voters, 39,719 ballots were cast for a total of 35.2 per cent.

For the official results, please go to www.oakville.ca and click on 2006 Election Results.
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