Michael Davitt is the new face on La Cañada Flintridge .
After waiting two and a half days for city officials to tally the final election results, residents on Thursday congratulated both Davitt, and candidate Charlie Kamar, who trailed behind the favored Davitt, endorsed by the full council, Assemblyman Anthony Portantino (D-La Cañada) and L.A. County Supervisor Mike Antonovich.
“We had a little anxiety [the last two days] until we did some statistical calculations, and determined Michael would win – but you never know how things can turn out,’’ said Chuck Gelhaar, Davitt’s campaign manager.
Team Davitt’s math worked: Davitt, director of real estate for the Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles, earned 18.7 percent of the vote, with Kamar garnering 17.7 percent – the difference of 118 votes.
But for Kamar’s first run at city council, going up against veteran incumbents Laura Olhasso and Don Voss – who captured the other two council seats Tuesday night – and Davitt, a two-term planning commissioner, Kamar was pleased with his showing.
“I’m delighted with the outcome. Everything is good for La Cañada,’’ the 58-year-old candidate said.
Of his 1,977 votes, Kamar added, “We sent a strong message that the merchants want to be represented at city hall.’’ Kamar owns the La Cañada .
While city officials tabulated the majority of votes Tuesday night, there were 346 (previously reported as 348) provisional and vote-by-mail ballots that still needed to be counted. Olhasso and Voss safely secured their seats election night, but a mere 132 votes separated Davitt and Kamar.
When asked Friday if Kamar had found the two-day holding pattern at all worrisome, he shook his head and referenced the earthquake and subsequent tsunami that devastated Japan.
“This was cake,’’ he said.
In all, 30.1 percent of the city’s 14,166 registered voters cast a ballot in this city council election. The absentee turnout totaled 2,546 people, with 1,718 folks voting at one of the city’s six precincts. Additional statistics released by the city include six people who “over voted,’’ voting for more than the allowable three candidates, four people who submitted blank ballots and one write-in candidate.
That was Patrick Davitt – the 18-year-old son of the newest city council member. Patrick, a senior at St. Francis High School voted for his dad, but said he couldn’t resist writing his name in, as he, too, has political aspirations.
Neither Davitt was able to attend the final vote count in Council Chambers Friday, but a handful of residents turned out, as well as Voss and City Councilman Steve Del Guercio.
Keith Tobias said he's known the current council for many years, and even though he's been a city commissioner for 12 years, he clarified Friday that he was speaking as any other tax paying La Cañada resident.
"With the current economic situation, and the state's fiscal crisis, it's a relief to see we have three expereinced leaders to fill these seats,'' he said.
The rest of the election reults from March 8 are: Voss, 2,207 votes; Olhasso, 2,645, Robert Richter, 794, James Hill, 828 and Jacqueline Harris, 618.