BEVERLY — John Frates defeated incumbent Ward 6 City Councilor Brett Schetzsle in yesterday’s election.
This means there will be four new members of the City Council as Mike Cahill takes over the reins as mayor from Bill Scanlon, who decided not to seek re-election after 18 years. All other incumbent council candidates were returned to office by the voters.
Candidates Matt St. Hilaire, David Lang and Estelle Rand will join Frates on the council as first-time members.
Frates, 55, who won with 52 percent of the vote, was at home last night waiting for the election results on TV when Schetzsle called to congratulate him. Frates served as a city alderman from 1988 to 1990, filling a seat left vacant by the passing of Al Romani. This is his first time being elected, he said.
“I am happy the community has supported my family for so long. The whole intent was to give back as much as I could,” Frates said, noting that he was concerned about being out of city politics for nearly 25 years. “What I heard loud and clear is approachability, visibility and connection to the municipal process.”
Schetzsle, 36, said he was proud of his approach as city councilor for the past two years, saying he has delivered on his promise of being an independent voice.
“I hope the new council and mayor will work together to move us forward with the issues we face,” he said.
St. Hilaire will join incumbents Paul Guanci and Jason Silva as an at-large councilor. Guanci received the most votes with 7,591. Silva received 5,549 votes and St. Hilaire, 4,125.
In having received the most votes, Guanci, 54, will remain as City Council president. He has been on the council for 12 years and will return for his seventh term, five of which he’s served as president.
“It means a lot because we are going to have a new mayor, who we now know will be Mike Cahill,” Guanci said last night. “I think that my experience as a city councilor will help ease him into the job.”