OKEECHOBEE - With most of the votes counted, Noel Chandler is the unoffical winner of the Okeechobee City Council election. Of the 3,132 registered voters in the city of Okeechobee, 368 cast their votes either by mail or in person. Chandler received 132 votes, Beth Lehman 89, Lisa Feltenberger 76 and David McAuley 71.
Election Supervisor Melissa Arnold explained she has a handful of votes that could still be added but the number makes it unlikely the election results would change. These votes might not have a signature or maybe the signature did not match the one on file. These individuals can come in over the next couple days to "cure" their vote. They will have been notified by now.
Yesterday's election was Arnold's first as Supervisor of Elections and when asked how she feels after her first successful election, she replied, "Blessed. It was amazing." She went on to praise her staff whom she described as amazing. She also praised the pollworkers, who tirelessly spent the day assisting those who came in to vote.
Arnold was excited to bring something new to Okeechobee elections. Rather than waiting a week or two to be paid, pollworkers received their pay last night after the polls closed. She is happy with the way things went yesterday and is looking forward to her first big election next year.
Chandler said he is excited about taking his seat on the city council. "I appreciate everyone who voted for me. I was disappointed more people didn't vote though."
"I'm not new at this. I've been on the city council before. There are a lot of things coming to Okeechobee, new people, new stores coming in. We need to be ready for it. We need to upgrade our city codes and then act on it. We can't just say you have a fine and then forget it."
Chandler will be sworn in on June 1.