Scene set for South Bethany elections


There will be an election in South Bethany this year. Council seat and mayoral action has been quiet in neighboring Bethany Beach and Fenwick Island, with no elections there during the last election period, as no new candidates filed for the contested seats. Instead, incumbents retained their previously-won posts.

But with an April 13 filing deadline for South Bethany three council seats, four candidates had filed for the spots.

Current Councilman John Fields, who joined the council as a freshman in 2004, has filed for re-election to his seat. The same goes for veteran Councilwoman and former mayor Marge Gassinger, who was re-elected in 2004. The third seat — currently occupied by Councilman Bob Cestone — will have a new body occupying it this year. Cestone told the Coastal Point this week that he’d decided to drop off the council this year.

“I’ve got a lot of things going on in my life, and I want to build myself a house,” Cestone explained. He didn’t rule out a future run, but for right now, he’s calling it quits.

That means South Bethany will have an election this year, with full-time residents John Rubinsohn and Christopher White both having filed.

Not unexpectedly, Mayor Gary Jayne has filed for re-election to his mayoral post, which is elected separately from the council.

Jayne ran for mayor unopposed after former Mayor Don Beck declined to re-file in 2004, on the basis of a prior term on the council. More recently, Council Members Richard Ronan and Bonnie Lambertson were re-elected, in 2005, with Jay Headman taking over the spot vacated by retiring member Lloyd Hughes. Those three spots are not up for re-election this time out.

With at least two new candidates on the ballot this time out, it is even possible that one of the two incumbents filing for re-election might be unseated, while someone new will surely take over for Cestone.

The election is set to take place May 27, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at town hall.