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Linda Osinchuk loses mayor’s seat after tight race in Strathcona County

EDMONTON – Strathcona County’s incumbent mayor, Linda Osinchuk, has been defeated by Roxanne Carr in what has been an extremely close race.

The two women were neck and neck as the results from the 27 polls trickled in, with only 446 votes between them.

Osinchuk had served as Strathcona County’s mayor for the past three years. Carr, meanwhile, has been sitting on Strathcona County’s council since being elected to represent Ward 2 in 2007.

Carr spoke to Global News about why she thought she won:

She said that her focus is her ‘9 (actions) in 90′ days platform.

“We are going to hit strongly on accountability,” Carr said. “Accountability runs through my action platform…we will be open, we will be honest, we will be transparent. The public within 90 days will see expenses go online. They will see a new way of communication between their councillors and themselves. And they will hold us to this mandate. And above all, we need fiscal accountability.”

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ELECTION RESULTS: Live Strathcona County election results

Final results for the mayoral votes from all 27 polls
Final results for the mayoral votes from all 27 polls Strathcona County's website

The reaction to the results came quickly on Twitter:

Osinchuk, herself, took to Twitter to acknowledge the results:

She told Global News that she is proud of all the work her team accomplished in the last three years.

“I wish well to everyone who has been successful tonight, and in my heart, I am successful,” Osinchuk said.

One incumbent who was not successful in getting re-elected was Jason Gariepy. He ended up losing to Fiona Beland-Quest by nearly 40 per cent.

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The former Ward 8 councillor found himself embroiled in controversy, saying he felt like he was being blackmailed out of the race after an alleged “lewd correspondence and explicit images involving him were mailed to his wife, as well as the county’s mayor.”

Gariepy was determined not to let the scandal stop him. In a post on his site dated October 1st, Gariepy called this campaign the most “vitriolic and bitter” one of the three elections he has been involved with, saying “American style politics” had hit Strathcona County.

In another post last week, Gariepy went on the attack against his challenger, Fiona Beland-Quest.

“Dave Quest is a Sherwood Park MLA, representing the Government of Alberta. His wife, Fiona Beland-Quest, is running for Strathcona County Council. Residents have a right to ask: will she defend the needs and interests of our community ahead of her husband’s (especially when it could cost him votes in a future election or a cabinet position)?

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…Most voters see the conflict of interest. It is nearly impossible for someone married to an MLA to be impartial. In fact, Fiona Beland-Quest has nothing but praise for the provincial government. Review her Twitter and social media accounts. She has never been critical of the Heartland Transmission Line project, funding cutbacks, or upset over broken promises and delays with the Strathcona County Hospital.”

Voters had the final say, though.


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