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Sandy Journal

Monica Zoltanski holds narrow lead in early results for Sandy mayor’s race

Nov 02, 2021 10:21PM ● By Justin Adams

By Justin Adams | [email protected]

The first batch of election results released by the Salt Lake County Recorder’s Office show Monica Zoltanski narrowly leading Jim Bennett in the race to be Sandy’s next mayor.

Zoltanski leads a crowded field of eight candidates competing in a ranked-choice voting format. Four of the candidates, including Zoltanski, are current city council members. Other candidates with ties to the council include Linda Saville, who served on the council until 2019, and Mike Applegarth, the executive director of the council. 

Bennett is a local businessman, as well as the son of the late Utah Senator Bob Bennett. 

At the end of the first round of vote-counting, Zoltanski had received 2,563 first place votes, followed closely by Bennett with 2,419. Council member Kris Nicholl rounded out the top three with 1,522 votes. 

Receiving the fewest votes in the first round was Ronald Jones, a candidate who ran on a single-issue campaign: opposition to ranked-choice voting. After being eliminated, any ballot that had him ranked first then reverted to that voter’s second choice candidate, with their vote added to that candidate’s cumulative total. 

At least according to the vote totals as counted so far, the next candidates to be eliminated were Marci Houseman, Mike Applegarth, Brooke Christensen, Linda Saville and Kris Nicholl. 

After the elimination of all other candidates, Zoltanski had increased her vote total to 5,128, while Bennett had increased to 5,057. 

What is unknown at this point is how many ballots remain to be counted. The first batch of results is based on 12,482 counted ballots, much fewer than the 23,007 ballots that were cast in the same mayoral election in 2017. There could potentially be thousands more ballots to count, which could swing the results in a number of directions.