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Trio of incumbents retain Taneytown City Council seats

Voter Fairy Flickinger checks in to vote in the Taneytown municipal election Monday, May 3, 2021.
Voter Fairy Flickinger checks in to vote in the Taneytown municipal election Monday, May 3, 2021. (Dylan Slagle / Carroll County Times)

The incumbents will keep their seats on the Taneytown City Council after 5% of eligible voters participated in Monday’s election.

Diane Foster, Judith Fuller and Joe Vigliotti won the three open seats, beating out newcomer Barbara Cook.

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Election results provided by the city showed that with 266 ballots cast, Vigliotti received 241 votes, Foster 239, Fuller 226 and Cook 66.

Foster said in a phone call Monday night that she, Fuller and Vigliotti were happy with the results. It was what they were hoping for. She credited how well the three of them did during the candidate forum and the experience they had as current city council members.

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“The three of us are just looking forward to getting back to work and getting back some normalcy,” she said. “Hopefully, turning things around economically.”

She added they also hope to get back to work on things that fell by the wayside due to the pandemic.

Earlier in the day, people trickled in and out of the police station in Taneytown as a few raindrops trickled down on election day. The Taneytown Police Station housed the voting booths where town residents cast their vote for three city council seats.

Incumbents typically have an advantage, so Cook was a bit of a longshot given that Foster has served on the council since 2009, Vigliotti since 2013 and Fuller since 2017.

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Clara Kalman, city clerk, said around 2 p.m. that day the turnout had been constant but “not terribly busy.” She said more people usually show between 4 and 6 p.m., based on past elections. It may be too soon to tell if the COVID-19 pandemic played a part in voter turnout, Kalman said, but it’s possible the weather “has turned people away as well.”

Taneytown has 4,795 active voters, according to Kalman. The polls closed at 7 p.m.

Technician Kevin Parkerson gives voting machine instructions to Jim Miller before he casts his ballot in the Taneytown municipal election at the Taneytown police station Monday, May 3, 2021.
Technician Kevin Parkerson gives voting machine instructions to Jim Miller before he casts his ballot in the Taneytown municipal election at the Taneytown police station Monday, May 3, 2021. (Dylan Slagle / Carroll County Times)

Cook said she was at the police station earlier in the morning and was disappointed in the low turnout. She said around 3 p.m. she would return later to see if it picked back up.

“I’ve always been a good citizen since I was eligible to vote,” Cook said. “I never missed voting in a national or local election.”

She also said she has attended council meetings for the last 12 years. But she has never heard her ideas presented at the meeting.

“What I’m going to propose if elected would be turning down a different street,” she said. And added finding the money to preserve historic buildings would be one of them.

The incumbents spent much of the day sitting at the back of the station in front of the parking lot. The table they shared, where snacks were available, had each of their campaign signs posted around them. The three were not running together officially but were endorsing one another and spoke about how they’ve worked as a team.

Ray Vigliotti, right, talks with council candidates, from left, his son, Joe Vigliotti, Judy Fuller and Diane Foster outside the Taneytown police station as Taneytown holds municipal elections Monday, May 3, 2021.
Ray Vigliotti, right, talks with council candidates, from left, his son, Joe Vigliotti, Judy Fuller and Diane Foster outside the Taneytown police station as Taneytown holds municipal elections Monday, May 3, 2021. (Dylan Slagle / Carroll County Times)

“We haven’t raised taxes in quite a few years,” Foster said.

Vigliotti added they cut the water and sewer rates.

“Between the three of us, we’ve taken the community to a level it’s never been before,” he said.

He said later they work well together. They share information which helps them make better decisions. And they volunteer to help others in Taneytown, Vigliotti added. Fuller, he said, spends days in the cold decorating the park for Christmas. Foster, he added, volunteers with numerous groups.

Foster said they also make themselves available to the public, passing out their personal numbers and answering calls on weekends and after business hours. Fuller credited Vigliotti for answering people on Facebook.

The three said they paid down debt service by a third years ahead of schedule, they kept the budget tight and hired many new people.

And, after Monday night, they will have four more years together on the council.

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