By Cathy Spaulding
Phoenix Staff Writer
Incumbent Gerald Taylor squeaked past challenger Eric Tuck to keep his seat on the Fort Gibson Board of Education, Office 3.
Final, unofficial votes from Muskogee, Wagoner and Cherokee counties had Taylor winning the election by 13 votes — 256 to 243.
“It just shows experience does count, that’s how I look at it,” said Taylor, 71, who is retired from the VA Regional Office. “I just want to thank the voters in the community who voted for me.”
Tuck, 46, said he was not yet aware of the final results. He had spent the evening going to dinner with his family and picking up campaign signs.
“We think we gave it a good run,” Tuck said. “We gave Fort Gibson the opportunity to choose a candidate.”
An employee of the U.S. Marshal Service, Tuck said he plans to talk with his wife before deciding if he will seek a recount.
Taylor defeated Tuck in the Muskogee County part of the school district, 229 to 212. However, Tuck won all four votes in Wagoner County. Tuck and Taylor split votes in Cherokee County, 27 to 27.
During the election, Taylor said he ran because he wanted to “keep the same quality of education that we’ve had.”
He said Tuesday that the next order of business is a $5.4 million bond issue, set for March 5 — three weeks away.
The bond issue, if passed, would help fund new roofs at the Early Learning Center and high school, new buses, new science labs, plus new instruments, uniforms and lockers for the band. The bond issue also would help fund technology upgrades.
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Fort Gibson Board of Education, Office 3
Gerald Taylor, 256, or 51.3 percent; Eric Tuck, 243, or 48.6 percent.