Voters in West York ousted two-term mayor Sam Firestone in the primary election Tuesday, choosing instead a former councilman.

Fellow Republican Charles "Chuck" Wasko won by just 10 votes, gaining 116 to 106 for Firestone, according to unofficial election results.

"When I get (in office), the people will have a voice," Wasko said after reviewing results late Tuesday night. "I'm going to work with the council, not control council."

Wasko also won the Democrat ballot with write-ins by a large margin, according to unofficial results at the West York polling sites.

In 2010, Wasko was appointed to fill a vacant seat on the council, but failed to retain the seat in 2011 when he lost in the general election. He was not affiliated with a political party in that election.

Barring a write-in campaign by Firestone or another candidate, Wasko is all but assured to win the general election in November.

Firestone did not immediately return a call seeking comment Tuesday night.

Council: The race for four open council seats remains a contested race in the fall. Four Republicans will face off against three Democrats.

Incumbents led on both tickets. The top finisher among Republicans was Shelly Metzler with 115 votes; tops among Democrats was Brian Wilson with 174.

But a third incumbent, Shane Louthian, was ousted, finishing fifth on the Republican ticket. The other would-be incumbent, Dawn Shue, recently resigned her council seat because she moved out of the area earlier this year.


Advancing on the GOP ticket alongside Metzler are Tim Berkheimer with 110 votes, Nick Laughman with 102 and Mary Wagner with 94.

The quartet beat out Louthian with 92 votes, Ron "Skip" Franklin (85), Josef Urich (86) and Tom Koons (88), according to unofficial results.

On the Democrat side, only three candidates filed to run. Likely advancing with Wilson were former councilman Joe Mummert (140) and Walt Anderson (70).

But 242 write-in votes were also cast on the Democratic ticket, and those results, unavailable until later, could affect who moves on.

Moving ahead: Laughman said he's looking forward to the election and, if elected to the council, would get back to focusing on providing services to the residents.

"I'm looking forward to getting out and meeting all the voters," he said.

Wagner too said she's keeping her sights on the fall election. Happy that she won in her race, Wagner was even more pleased with the outcome of the mayoral election.

"I'm happy. We're getting a new mayor," she said.

Over the past year or so, West York council meetings have been contentious at times, with a divided council. Voter Mike Gibson said he'd like to see council members willing to put aside differences and work together.

"We don't have to like each other, but we do need to work together," he said.

After casting his vote Tuesday afternoon, Gibson said he not only voted for himself but also with his children in mind.

"I can speak for me, and I can speak for my kids," Gibson said after voting at the Reliance Fire Co. "They're not being heard. I'm their voice."

- Reach Greg Gross at