The field of five candidates for the Dayton City Commission has been narrowed to four, after Valerie Duncan came in last place in the run-off election Tuesday.
That is according to unofficial Montgomery County Board of Election results, with all city precincts reporting.
Incumbent Commissioners Matt Joseph and Chris Shaw were the top vote-getters, and challenger Shenise Turner-Sloss finished in third place, the results show.
David Esrati held a small lead over Valerie Duncan for fourth place. The four finalists move on to compete in November for two open commission seats.
Joseph, who is seeking a fifth term, had 2,386 votes (28.1 percent of the total). Shaw, who is seeking a second term, had 2,151 votes (25.35 percent).
Turner-Sloss had 1,833 votes (21.6 percent).
Esrati finished with 1,104 votes (12.92 percent), beating Duncan by 93 votes, according to the unofficial results.
The candidate with the lowest vote tally doesn’t make the cut.
Shaw owns Shaw Cleaners and Joseph is a senior logistician with the Sierra Nevada Corp.
Esrati, a local business owner and a vocal critic of the city, is trying to win a seat after unsuccessfully running for commission multiple times since the 1990s.
Turner-Sloss, who works as a logistics management specialist for the federal government, lost a bid for city office in November 2017.
Some people thought the commission races could be impacted by federal indictments unsealed a week ago alleging that a former city commissioner and city employee took bribes and engaged in other “corrupt” activities.
“If it doesn’t impact the city commission races, there’s something very wrong,” Esrati said.
This news organization today talked to multiple voters who said they did not believe Dayton had a “culture of corruption,” which was how an FBI agent described Dayton-area politics when discussing the federal indictments.
Margaret Peters said she’s lived in Dayton here whole life and she knows all the people running. She said her vote wasn’t influenced at all by the federal charges.
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