Updated election results indicate that the city of Alameda will have a new mayor and two new faces on its City Council.
Some absentee votes and provisional ballots remain to be counted, but City Councilwoman Marilyn Ezzy Ashcraft has increased her lead over incumbent Mayor Trish Spencer since the first tally was released on election night and a week later led Spencer by 41.8 percent to 37.2 percent, with Councilman Frank Matarrese in third place with 20.4 percent of the vote.
Ashcraft only had a 213-vote margin over Spencer on election night but she now has a 1,114-vote lead over Spencer.
In the City Council race, former planning board member John Knox White is still comfortably in first place with 26 percent of the vote, former Councilmember Tony Daysog is second with 22.9 percent, incumbent Jim Oddie is third with 19.2 percent, Robert Matz is fourth with 18.2 percent and Stewart Chen is fifth with 13.2 percent.
The top two finishers win seats on the council, but in an odd twist Oddie will stay on the council if he maintains his lead over Matz, which currently is 413 votes, and if Ashcraft keeps her lead over Spencer.
That’s because Ashcraft will have to give up her council seat if she’s elected mayor and the third-place council finisher will take her spot.
The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office said in a recent report that Oddie and Vice Mayor Malia Vella tried to influence former City Manager Jill Keimach in her decision on hiring a new fire chief in 2017.
However, the district attorney concluded that Oddie and Vella didn’t commit extortion or bribery.
The district attorney said Keimach didn’t break any laws when she secretly recorded her conversation with Oddie and Vella in August 2017 and her belief that recording the meeting to gather evidence of possible misconduct on their part “was not unreasonable given all the circumstances.”
Story originally published by Bay City News.