By Gregg Bragg, The Island Connection Staff Writer
The Town of Kiawah Island held its mayoral and council election on Dec. 6, 2016. Only the mayor’s race was contested. Thirty percent of residents turned out to cast their votes (compared to fifty percent in November’s general election) with a total of 531 votes cast in the mayoral push.
Incumbent councilmember Craig Weaver garnered 343 of those votes prevailing over long term councilmember Mary Johnson’s 175 votes to become mayor-elect. The remaining 13 entries went to an unorganized assortment of candidates, which included “Mandy Sandcastle”, possibly in reference to Kiawah Island Community Association’s Mandy Danker.
Fewer votes were cast for seats on council, which were all uncontested races. Diana L. Mezzanotte, who narrowly missed a seat on the KICA board earlier this year, led the pack with 432 votes. She was followed by Chris Widuch with 407, and the back of the pack listed John R. Wilson 397 and John H. Koach, 383.
The group will have its hands full with little time to celebrate. The Kiawah Island Utility has filed for a 25+ percent rate increase, and the new council must act before the end of the month if they are to file as “interveners” in the process before the Public Service Commission.