CommunityCouncilPoliticsTop Story

Here’s Tommy…

Tommy Maher is Paradise’s newest town councillor after topping the poll in Tuesday’s byelection. Helping celebrate the win at his headquarters on Topsail Road were, from left: former councillor Fred Thornhill, Wanda Thornhill, Donna Clarke, sister-in-law Denise Maher, Tommy Maher, brother Dwyane Maher, wife Marlaina Dunphy, and Mike Shawyer. Chad Feehan photo

By Chadd Feehan / Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Contractor Tommy Maher plowed his way through to a walkaway win in Tuesday’s Paradise council by-election, capturing just over 40 per cent of the vote among a field of four candidates.
The byelection was called to fill the seat created by the passing of popular councillor, mom, construction administrator and volunteer Elizabeth Laurie who was lost to cancer earlier this year.
Maher came out on top with 549 votes. Teacher and businesswoman Jennifer Hiscock collected 396 votes, behaviour management specialist Erin Furlong received 340 votes, and retired environmental health officer Tony Kelly got 75 votes.
Maher admitted he hadn’t gotten much sleep in the days leading up to the vote but was pretty excited about the outcome.
“I had a knot in my stomach all evening looking at the results,” he said Tuesday. “I guess the residents of the town have spoken, and I was the person they put in for their voice.”
Maher said he had over 600 requests from residents for lawn signs, but only had 200 to give.
“That says a lot. If someone is going to put a sign on their lawn, there’s a pretty good chance they’re going to vote for you,” he allowed.
Mayor Dan Bobbett said it was a good, fair byelection with great campaigns carried out by all candidates, and welcomed Maher on board.
“I told him I’m looking forward to working with him and moving forward,” Bobbett said. “I look forward to hearing his concerns and his issues that he may have heard at the doors.”
With council returning to full capacity, Bobbett said he’ll be switching up committee and chair appointments.
Maher generated attention last winter when the Town ordered him to stop using his construction equipment to groom Paradise’s hiking trails for public use at no charge.
Meanwhile, even though the only thing between Maher and officially sitting in a councillor’s chair is the official swearing-in ceremony, the reality of it all hadn’t quite sunk in immediately after the vote.
“Maybe tomorrow when I go into the Town Hall and meet with the town manager to get some stuff rolling it’ll start to kick in,” he said. “There’s no doubt I’m going to have a busy year and a half, and I’m looking forward to it to see what improvements we can make.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *