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Carolyn Blackman’s win is official after a Dover recount. The day after the Nov. 5th election, Democrat Blackman led incumbent Mayor James Dodd by 19 votes.
Dodd ran as an independent, but says he’s a Democrat.
It was a nasty race. Political tensions in town have simmered for some time. Public meetings often include an exchange of insults among both the mayor and the audience and the mayor and fellow board members. Dodd a year or so ago created a website in which – to put it mildly – he suggests some of his opponents are a bit unsavory.
During the campaign, signs around town seeking support for the mayor said, “Dover means business.”
The apparent upshot is that the mayor had done a good job trying to foster redevelopment in a town that by Morris County standards is on the lower end of the economic spectrum. A key piece of that is a 214-unit residential development near the train station.
The Blackman team wasn’t so sure about that. Ed Correa, the chair of the town’s Democratic committee, questioned if the new development would attract commuters, noting that Manhattan is more than an hour away by train, And if it attracts families, that could tax the school system. he said.
Judging from the bad blood of the recent past, however, one ot the impression at the time that this contest was going to be more about personalities than anything else.
It was, and it was also nasty.
But in the end, Blackman prevailed after a recount.