MASSIVE CHANGES: New-look city council elected in Cornwall

MASSIVE CHANGES: New-look city council elected in Cornwall
Councillor-elect Mark MacDonald and a supporter view the election results Monday night at the civic complex.

CORNWALL, Ontario – Angry voters have turfed four city councillors and Mayor Bob Kilger in a massive endorsement of change at city hall.

The best finish for a new city councillor goes to Claude McIntosh, a journalist turned politician who raked in nearly 5,000 votes and finished second only to Bernadette Clement who once again topped the results with nearly 7,000.

“I’m blown away by the margin,” said McIntosh. “I was shooting for 10th spot. I thought that would be a good place for me to finish.”

But voters had other plans.

“People told me they wanted change. And I wasn’t sure I believed it. But it was out there,” said McIntosh, who ran a bare-bones campaign. “I had 75 signs and every one of them, people asked me for them. I didn’t have to ask one person to put a sign up.”

The new councillors also include Mark MacDonald, Justin Towndale, Carilyne Hebert and Brock Frost.

Gone are Gerry Samson, Denis Carr, Glen Grant and Syd Gardiner.

Hebert, who at 26 marks a new youth movement at city hall – something else voters clearly wanted – was the first person to file her nomination papers, way back in January.

She finished in seventh spot with nearly 4,400 votes.

“Unreal. I’m thrilled,” Hebert said. “We ran a positive campaign. I had so many people behind me and we worked so hard for this. I knew I would be proud of our results, but this is above and beyond.”

“I think I can bring energy and perspective that some of the others might not be able to. The issues youth dealt with now, and what they dealt with many years ago, are different.”

Towndale and Frost both said when they approached voters while out knocking on doors the message was simple.

“They wanted change,” said Towndale, who will parlay his experience working at Queen’s Park into that of a politician at city hall.

Frost said voters were adamant.

“I would consider this election a huge shakeup,” he said.

Mark MacDonald, a former city councillor who lost to Mayor Bob Kilger in the last municipal election, was delighted Monday night.

“Things have gone wrong for four years,” he said. “And now with the new council there’s a lot of challenges ahead. The budget will be the biggest thing – it all comes down to money.

“Now we have a mix of young and old. Experience and new.”

The new city council will be sworn in, in December. The existing council has just one meeting left, in November, but won’t be able to effect much change given the high number of incumbents who were shown the door.

With all polling stations reporting, the results are:

Bernadette Clement: 7,313

Claude E. McIntosh: 5,233

Elaine MacDonald: 5,122

Justin Towndale: 4,728

Maurice Dupelle: 4,726

David Murphy: 4,664

Carilyne Hebert: 4,615

Brock Frost: 4,178

Mark A MacDonald: 4,119

Andre Rivette: 4,048


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