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Koos Confident Slim Lead Will Hold; Tiritilli Hints At Recount

Chris Koos watches results
Cristian Jaramillo
Normal Mayor Chris Koos looking at results on a big screen, joined by supporters on Tuesday, April 4, 2017.

When all the votes to be counted Tuesday were in, Normal Mayor Chris Koos held a slim seven-vote lead over challenger Marc Tiritilli.

"I'm confident we're going to prevail," Koos told supporters gathered at Medici.

Tiritilli told GLT News he will ask for a recount if he loses.

"If there's not an automatic recount, I will ask for one, yes," he said.

The final total as posted by the McLean County Clerk's office had Koos with 3,113 votes to Tiritilli's 3,106. A McLean County Clerk's office employee told GLT News there is a two-week period for mail-in ballots to be received and counted.

The challenger was quick to encourage supporters who had spent the evening at Rosati's in north Normal.

"There were 97 either under or over-vote ballots that they might take a second look at. There are still mail-in ballots that have a two-week window of opportunity still," Tiritilli added.

As the vote-counting progressed through the evening, Tiritilli built a modest lead and widened it slowly, only to have Koos charge back and regain his only lead of the night when the final five of 70 precincts to report were added in. The incumbent told GLT News the next two weeks will be tense ones for him.

"It's a lot closer than I expected, I'll be truthful on that. My opponent ran a pretty good campaign apparently and it was a squeaker," Koos said.

Koos said the results give him pause about the public's perception of where the town is headed.

"That's something I'm going to have to think about, because apparently a lot of people were concerned about where the town was headed. The debt incurred on Uptown (Normal) years ago became an issue again in this campaign for my opponent, and apparently it resonated with some people," said Koos.

Cummings Gains Council Seat

Chemberly Cummings was the third vote-getter among the four town of Normal council candidates and thus becomes the first African-American to sit on the council. She will join two incumbents.

"I'm so humbled and I'm so honored because this is my first try and to get the numbers and support that I've received has been phenomenal," Cummings said right after the final vote count was in.

She said she ran on a platform highlighting the quality of life in Normal. Cummings said there is still work to be done, however.

"We need to not just talk about being diverse and inclusive, we need to actually be diverse and inclusive," Cummings concluded.

Incumbents Kevin McCarthy and Scott Preston led the way, with challenger Ron Ulmer finishing fourth, thus being the only candidate not to gain election. McCarthy totaled 3,652 to Preston's 3,377 and Cummings' 2,998 votes. Ulmer's total was 2,848.

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Colleen has spent most of her adult life working the streets and beats of Bloomington-Normal for WJBC-AM where she won numerous reporting awards for hard news, feature writing, and breaking news coverage.
Baylee Steelman joined us in November 2016. She is a journalism major graduating in May 2018. She mainly covers Bloomington City and Normal Town Council meetings, Unit 5 School Board meetings, produces the weekend News In Review, and helps run GLT events. Baylee also produces and anchors at TV-10, Illinois State University's student TV news station.
Willis is a Bloomington, IL, native. During his senior year at Bloomington High School, he finished third in the "Radio Speaking" division of the state speech contest, the only year he competed.
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