SLC Elections: Out with the Old--Except for Becker and Garrott | Buzz Blog
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SLC Elections: Out with the Old--Except for Becker and Garrott



The results of last night’s elections are in, and incumbent Salt Lake City Council members J.T. Martin and Van Turner have been ousted. Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker coasted—nay--glided casually into a second-term victory.---

Becker, who faced a dark-horse challenger in J. Allen Kimball, a 79-year-old former small businessman, garnered 74 percent of the vote without breaking a sweat, according to election results. Despite controversy over the initial site choice of the “cop shop” Public Safety Complex to be located on Library Square and a dustup over dog parks in the city, Becker couldn’t find an opponent ready to mount a serious campaign and will go into a second term ready to push more major projects such as a downtown performing-arts theatre.

In the east bench’s District 6 race, lobbyist and Planning Commissioner Charlie Luke bested hot-headed district incumbent J.T. Martin by taking 61 percent of the vote compared to Martin’s 38.47 percent. The no-holds-barred race got ugly early on when Luke cast Martin as a grouch living off his rich developer father-in-law, while Martin considered Luke a lobbyist ready to cash in with former clients by gaining a seat of power on the council.

A friendlier race on the west side found the laid-back but energetic People’s Market founder Kyle Lamalfa defeating 12-year incumbent Van Turner by 57 percent to Turner’s 42 percent.While Turner touted past success in helping reduce crime in the Poplar Grove and Glendale neighborhoods with his anti-graffiti program and his small-business credentials -- he runs three businesses on California Avenue -- Lamalfa won out by arguing for calls for community engagement and getting more west-side representation on the Salt Lake School Board.

District 4 councilman Luke Garrott was the other contender in the municipal election for the downtown and central-city portion of Salt Lake City. If Becker didn’t even break a sweat for his win, Garrott may not even realized he had an opponent in Jack Gray, a challenger with ties to a Neo-Nazi group. Garrott won the race with 77 percent of the vote compared to Gray’s 21 percent of the vote in the city race with the lowest voter turnout.