By Michelle Price
UCBJ Managing Editor
COOKEVILLE – Only two familiar faces will grace the bench when the Cookeville City Council is sworn in at their next meeting. Laurin Wheaton and Eric Walker were reelected to a second four-year term and will be joined by Luke Eldridge, Ali Bagci and Chad Gilbert.
Wheaton was the top vote getter with 2,431 votes (16.22%). Newcomer Eldridge was second with 1,810 votes (12.08%), followed by Eric Walker 1,744 (11.64%), Ali C. Bagci 1,640 (10.94%) and Chad Gilbert 1,587 (10.59%).
Traditionally the top vote getter is named mayor by the council at its first meeting, with the second highest vote getter being chosen as vice-mayor.
There were 14,989 votes cast in the election for 12 candidates since Gene Bressler withdrew from the race too late for his name to be removed from the ballot.
The remaining candidates and the number of votes they received were Mark Miller 1,396 (9.31%), Jordan Iwanyszyn 1,150 (7.67%), Damon “Dee” Prince 1,069 (7.13%), Brian Jones 796 (5.31%), Lynda Marie Loftis-Webb 619 (4.13%), Jeremy Michael Bowman 451 (3.01%) and Gene Bressler 238 (1.59%).
Each of the newly elected council members had a few words for the citizens of Cookeville.