TANEYTOWN — Longtime Mayor Henry I. Reindollar Jr. could have chalked up his successful re-election bid to any number of things -- his stance on growth and other issues or the fact that he is a city native.
Instead,Reindollar, 73, who has been in the city's highest office for 11 years and is a former clerk-treasurer, surmised he won because he "got the most votes."
Indeed. Reindollar garnered 170 votes to defeat challengers HenryC. Heine Jr., with 142 votes, and political novice George W. Dodson Sr., who captured just 14 votes.
Council members W. Robert Flickinger and Jacquelyn J. Polk, unchallenged in the election, garnered 272and 255 votes, respectively, to win four-year terms on the five-member panel.
Flickinger has been a councilman for 20 years. Polk was appointed to the position, which pays $30 per meeting, two years ago.
Less than one-third -- 325 -- of the city's 1,151 registered voters cast ballots in Monday's election, said Linda Hess, city clerk-treasurer.
That showing, however, was better than the municipal election two years ago, when 193 residents cast ballots.
City Manager Neal W. Powell said he believes the heavier-than-usual turnout resulted from the contested mayoral race.
Reindollar, who ran unchallenged in the previous two mayoral elections, said some voters may have backed his candidacy because "I was born here, raised here, went to school here, and expect to die here," as he said at a recent candidate forum.
Councilman Heine said he felt the mayor's native standing had a lot to do with his re-election.
"He made it a strong issue," said Heine, who has served on council for two years. "I'm just not a native-born Taneytown resident. I've lived here 17 years but not beinga native really hurt me."
During the campaign, the 44-year-old mass transit engineer focused on growth. He said the city shouldn't expand beyond its capabilities to provide services, including sewer and water. He also voiced concerns about how growth in this community of 3,526 residents has affected local schools, which, like other schoolsacross the county, are overcrowded.
"I did the best I could and the people here have spoken," said Heine, who also has served on the city's Planning and Zoning Commission and the Board of Appeals. "I don't think I could have done more or less."
Heine said that despite growth in the community and an influx of new residents, the city is resistant to new faces and ideas.
Dodson, a 39-year-old shipping and receiving clerk who sought the position to promote recreational facilities for youngsters, could not be reached for comment.
Reindollar took his win matter-of-factly, spending election night at home andaway from the city office where ballots were counted.
"I didn't think appropriate to be up around there," he said.
Reindollar, who will be sworn in to the $2,400-a-year post for his fourth term Monday, said he will begin his new term by tackling some of his campaign issues, such as the city's restrictive sprinkler ordinance.
The mayor said the ordinance, which requires sprinkler systems in all new construction, including duplexes and town homes, needs to be liberalizedso it doesn't retard growth or burden residents.
"What we talked about in the election is what we're going to have to get started with," Reindollar said.
TANEYTOWN ELECTION RESULTS
Mayor (elect 1).. .. .. .. Votes
George W. Dodson Sr... .. .. .. 14
Henry C. HeineJr... .. .. .. 142
* Henry I. Reindollar Jr. .. ..170
Council (elect 2).. .. .. .. Votes
* W. Robert Flickinger .. .. ..272
*Jacqueline J. Polk.. .. .. ..255