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City Council Seat Winners in Sebastian and Vero Beach

Naem -

Indian River County - Wednesday November 8, 2023: Elections were held in Indian River County Tuesday night to fill vacancies on the city council seats in Sebastian and Vero Beach.

In the Vero Beach non-partisan City Council election John Cotugno and Taylor Dingle won election to the two open seats, edging out the third candidate Honey Minuse.

In Sebastian six candidates competed for the three open City Council seats in the other non-partisan election. The three incumbents won. Fred Jones, Christopher Nunn and Bob McPartlan retained their seats defeating challengers Damien H. Gilliams, Damien L. ‘Junior’ Gilliams, and Sherrie Mathews.

Turnout in both Vero Beach and Sebastian was 21.31 percent said Indian River County Supervisor of Elections Leslie Swan. A little less than the 22.62 percent in the last off year election in 2019.

“Unfortunately, we don’t get good turnout for Municipal Elections," said Swan. "And it doesn’t make sense to me because those are the people that effect you on your day to day lives.”

A number of people got upset who tried to turn in their mail in ballots at the polling locations. By law, that’s not allowed because poll workers don’t get back to the Election Office until after the 7 p.m. deadline. Swan said she knew of three incidents where that occurred. “They just got annoyed, ripped up their ballots, and stomped off. And, with the municipal elections, it’s always been like that, you can’t turn in your mail-in ballots on election day. They should have mailed them, or delivered in person to our office, or voted in person on election day.”

 Anyone who forgot to sign their ballot or whose signature did match what’s on record has until 5 p.m. Thursday afternoon to submit an affidavit correcting their ballot. “We’re waiting the two extra days because we had about ten of them that are still out and we’ll see if the folks turn in their affidavits or not. If they do we do get the affidavit, then we can go ahead and count their ballot. If we don’t get the affidavit their ballot won’t be counted.”