Belington appoints new mayor

BELINGTON — A new mayor of Belington has been appointed after the previous one resigned earlier this week.

Maureen Lasky-Setchell has been appointed to fill the position made vacant by Matt Ryan, who has served as mayor since 2015.

Ryan turned in his resignation on Monday. Belington City Council then met and appointed Lasky-Setchell as interim mayor, a representative from the Belington city office said Thursday.

Lasky-Setchell was a city council member prior to being appointed mayor.

Ryan won re-election in a memorably close race in March.

After a recount March 20, the two candidates to be the mayor of Belington ended with the same number of votes — 124.

Incumbent Ryan and challenger Jean Clark then agreed to let the race be decided by chance.

Rather than a coin flip, which is sometimes used in such situations, they agreed to have a Belington City Council member choose a number, and the candidate who guessed closest to the number would win the election, a Belington City Hall representative said.

Ryan guessed closest to the number, and was declared the winner, the representative said. Being re-elected, he would have served another two-year term as mayor.

On election night, preliminary vote totals showed the candidates three votes apart, with Ryan at 122 votes and Clark with 125 votes. The Belington municipal election took place March 5.

After vote canvassing on March 11, Ryan picked up one vote, and stood at 123 votes to Clark’s 125. Ryan then requested a recount and paid the $300 bond.