Ron McCullagh, Jim Lane and Kevin Osterman earned seats on the Scottsdale City Council in Tuesday’s runoff, a race that lacked both incumbents and sharp differences between the contenders.
McCullagh led the field of six candidates with 18,798 votes, and appeared on 59 percent of the ballots cast.
Lane followed with 17,023 votes, or 53 percent, and Osterman had 16,252 votes, or 51 percent.
Tony Nelssen, Henry Becker and William Crawford finished out of the running.
All six finished in the same order as they did in the general election on March 9.
“I feel good about it, naturally,” McCullagh said at a low-key reception at the Chaparral Suites Hotel Scottsdale, a resort owned by outgoing Councilman Tom Silverman and his family.
“I had the support of a lot of people and that’s what made the difference — individuals and neighborhoods and organizations,” McCullagh said.
Jim Lane compared the campaign to a pregnancy. “I've actually been in it about nine months,” he said jokingly. “Wonderful results.”
The three top finishers will join a seven-member council that has undergone wholesale changes in just two election cycles.
McCullagh, Lane and Osterman will join fellow council newcomer Betty Drake, who won a seat in the general election, and sitting Councilmen Bob Littlefield and Wayne Ecton, who are midway through their first four-year terms.
Only Mayor Mary Manross, who won re-election in a runoff against outgoing
Councilman David Ortega, has more than two years of experience on the new council.
The winning candidates will take office June 8.
“Basically the city's next leadership team has been selected and now it’s our turn to deal with all the issues that face the city,” Osterman said. “We have a pretty full slate.”
Chief among those issues: Creating a municipal fire department, developing the former Los Arcos Mall site, building a new spring training baseball complex for the San Francisco Giants, enhancing police service and preserving the quality of life for both residents and tourists, he said.
“Some big issues. Some important things. I’m looking forward to it really. I just can’t wait,” Osterman said.
During the runoff campaign, all six council candidates said they supported two big-ticket items — public safety and the continuation of the mountain preserve — though a few differed on how to fund the measures.
The six also also agreed that the city should wait for developer Steve Ellman to propose a new development plan for the Los Arcs site.
- Tribune writer Rosa Cirianni contributed to this report.