WITH a strong flow of preferences from excluded candidates, Luke Browning of Lawitta will be the new deputy mayor of the Derwent Valley Council. Figures from the Tasmanian Electoral Commission show that Cr Browning has finished with 55.7 per cent of the vote, ousting Jessica Cosgrove who has been deputy mayor since 2018.
Cr Cosgrove and Cr Browning were first elected to the council in 2018 and along with Julie Triffett were the only three to still be on the council at the end of that four-year term. Cr Triffett did not nominate for this election and has retired from the council.
Cr Cosgrove said she appreciated the strong vote she had received for both councillor and deputy mayor but acknowledged that the flow of preferences had benefited Cr Browning in the deputy mayoral poll. “I gave it my all and I am proud to continue representing our amazing community,” she said. “Congratulations to mayor Michelle Dracoulis and deputy mayor Luke Browning and all elected members.”
Cr Browning said he appreciated the opportunity ahead of him and looked forward to continuing to serve the community. “Thank you to everyone for the support, and ultimately the votes, which has gotten me over the line in a rollercoaster deputy mayoral count.”
Cr Browning had the strong support of former Derwent Valley mayor Ben Shaw throughout his campaign and was congratulated by Mr Shaw via Facebook. Mr Shaw’s own campaign to win election to the Sorell Council appears to have been unsuccessful.