Zimmer holds on to Clayton mayoral seat

Norma Zimmer and Colleen M. O’Neill monitor election results Tuesday night. Mrs. Zimmer will serve another four-year term as Clayton’s mayor. Marcus Wolf/Watertown Daily Times

CLAYTON — Norma J. Zimmer will serve as the mayor for another four-year term after winning most of the votes in the general election race Tuesday.

Democrat candidate Mrs. Zimmer, who received 298 votes, defeated Republican candidate Joseph S. Chrisman, who had 202 votes, and independent Nancy L. Hyde, with 52 votes, according to unofficial election results. There was one write-in vote.

More than a dozen supporters sitting beside Mrs. Zimmer at the Wood Boat Brewery cheered when the results poured in. Mrs. Zimmer, who was sporting a reelection campaign T-shirt, hugged her friends and supporters.

“It’s a great win for me and Clayton,” Mrs. Zimmer said. “We’ve got a lot of unfinished business we can put down now, and I’m happy to be a part of it.”

Mrs. Zimmer, who has served as mayor for 12 years, had promised her continued effort to further improve the village through various efforts, such as securing a $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative grant. She fostered several partnerships during her tenure, particularly with funding entities, that helped her and other leaders to enhance the village.

The community, she said, has also become divided, and she hopes to unite residents and officials toward a shared desire to better the village.

“I think it has been kind of divided lately, and we all need to get together and work together like we always have for the betterment of the community,” she said.

Dr. Hyde, if elected mayor wanted to incorporate a collaboration among leaders that has been lacking, improve communication between the board and residents and capitalize on more funding opportunities for infrastructure projects.

Dr. Hyde, who monitored the results from her home, still has another year as village trustee, and she said she will continue to serve the community in her current role.

“I’m certainly disappointed because I did feel that there were a lot of people who wanted – felt I was the most qualified,” she said.

Mr. Chrisman, a political newcomer, promised his supporters greater transparency to end what he claimed was the spread of “way too much misinformation” from village officials, as well as greater representation for residents.

Friends and supporters joined Mr. Chrisman at the Island Bay Pier House. Despite losing the race, he said he still plans to attend village Board of Trustee meetings and inform others of its happenings. He called the race a “win-win,” saying he met great people visiting houses to garner support.

“I wish the mayor luck. There are no bad feelings,” he said. “I ran because I didn’t agree with some of the policies. It was nothing personal. I hope to keep a good rapport with the mayor and the board.”

Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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