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Brandon Sun - PRINT EDITION

Isleifson edges Black by two in recount

Len Isleifson speaks with media as Court of Queen's Bench Justice Robert Cummings exits the city hall meeting room used for Tuesday afternoon's recount.

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Len Isleifson speaks with media as Court of Queen's Bench Justice Robert Cummings exits the city hall meeting room used for Tuesday afternoon's recount. (COLIN CORNEAU/BRANDON SUN)

City clerk Con Arvisais exits a room at city hall during the judicial recount of the vote in Riverview ward on Tuesday afternoon. Len Isleifson was confirmed as the winner by two votes over incumbent Errol Black.

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City clerk Con Arvisais exits a room at city hall during the judicial recount of the vote in Riverview ward on Tuesday afternoon. Len Isleifson was confirmed as the winner by two votes over incumbent Errol Black. (COLIN CORNEAU/BRANDON SUN)

Len Isleifson can finally pop the top on the champagne bottles he has had tentatively chilling since Oct.27.

A recount of municipal election results on Tuesday afternoon reaffirmed Isleifson's election as councillor in Brandon's Riverview ward.

Presided over by Court of Queen's Bench Justice Robert Cummings, a manual recount of ballots revealed Isleifson had garnered 542 votes compared to the 540 votes received by the ward's incumbent, Errol Black.

That's a one-vote gain from the initial tabulation on election night, which showed Isleifson with 541 votes to Black's 540.

Yesterday's manual recount revealed one extra vote for Isleifson, which was originally missed by the electronic vote tabulator used in last month's election because the voter in question shaded too far outside of the specified box.

Isleifson says he can now forge ahead as a public servant, knowing that the people of Riverview ward have elected him to represent them.

"I wanted to be sure," he told media following the official recount at Brandon City Hall yesterday afternoon. "If there was a mistake on the ballots the other way, I wanted to know that as well.

"It's nice that it's over with and we can move forward."

A final tally also means the Brandon RHA manager can continue moving forward with addressing the ward-specific concerns he has already begun to hear from residents.

"There's a lot of issues that have come forward, knocking on doors, and I've started the process in a lot of them ... sidewalks in certain areas that are crumbling that I've already taken forward," he said. "It's just that now we can relax and move forward and start doing the heavy work."

Black, meanwhile, says he accepts the results of the recount and is happy that the 2010 municipal election now has a final outcome for both him and his challenger.

"As I said to Len, if there's going to be one vote that goes to someone, I'm glad it's you, because the last thing I wanted was to do this (recount) again," he told the Sun. "Now, I'll move on with other things."

Though he maintains that he had at least "one more council term in him," Black said he's now ready to bid farewell to his 12 years around the council table.

"It was a very good experience and the best part was the people who encouraged me, supported me and kept me focused," he said. "It's a two-way kind of thing. You're the councillor. You're accountable to a whole lot of people and I think I was an effective councillor and worked well with constituents."

The morning after the municipal election, Black said he'd be focusing on writing a novel on what he calls "the arbitrary and capricious behaviour" of Brandon's city managers and former mayor Dave Burgess.

And Brandon City Hall likely hasn't seen the last of Black at regular council meetings.

"Maybe I'll sit in on the odd council meeting. Why not? Things are usually pretty slow on Monday nights," he joked.

Brandon's new city council sits down for its first official meeting on Monday, Nov.15.

Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition November 10, 2010 A1

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Len Isleifson can finally pop the top on the champagne bottles he has had tentatively chilling since Oct.27.

A recount of municipal election results on Tuesday afternoon reaffirmed Isleifson's election as councillor in Brandon's Riverview ward.

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Len Isleifson can finally pop the top on the champagne bottles he has had tentatively chilling since Oct.27.

A recount of municipal election results on Tuesday afternoon reaffirmed Isleifson's election as councillor in Brandon's Riverview ward.

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