Newcomer Souders elected to Smithsburg Council

May 14, 2008|By HEATHER KEELS

SMITHSBURG - Newcomer Donnie Souders Jr. was enthusiastically elected to the Smithsburg Town Council Tuesday along with incumbents Shirley D. Aurand and Jerome Martin, election officials said.

Souders, who moved to Smithsburg two years ago, received 125 votes, the most out of the four candidates who ran for the three open seats, said Kaye Duncan, chairman of the town's election board.

Aurand was next with 104, followed by Martin with 101. Debbie Mooney lost her bid for a council seat, receiving a total of 82 votes, Duncan said.

A total of 156 votes were cast, representing about 9 percent of registered voters, Duncan said.

Duncan said the turnout was typical for the town, but disappointing. She said the town might not have seen even as many voters as it did if it had it not been for an effort by Souders to bring new, younger voters to the polls.


"That's what we really need," Duncan said. "We can't have everybody who votes show up in a walker."

Souders, 34, is a sales manager for tobacco company Swedish Match North America and serves as treasurer of Washington County's Democratic Central Committee.

He will replace Councilman Thomas B. Smith, who did not run for re-election.

Souders said his priorities for the town include bringing economic development downtown and starting a curbside recycling program. He also wants to make the town's government more transparent and accountable and communicate better with residents.

Souders said he and Martin both want to address several issues with the town's charter, including the way contracts are bid and rebid.

"I'm excited about the opportunity, and I'm looking forward to working with the council and the town," he said.

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