After a long, contentious race, the Kenai Peninsula Borough has a new mayor: Charlie Pierce.
After a runoff last week, Pierce held on through a count of a record number of absentee ballots to win by 45 votes over Linda Farnsworth-Hutchings.
“Oh, boy oh boy. It’s really close and I’m just really humbled," Pierce said.
"It tells me that either my base didn’t turn out or this community is divided on the issues.”
Pierce campaigned on a promise to dig into the borough’s finances to find a way to trim back spending to close the borough’s $4 million budget gap. In the end, Pierce garnered 4,301 votes to Hutchings' 4,256.