Clapper beats Mooney; Richards over True | AspenTimes.com

Clapper beats Mooney; Richards over True

Charles Agar

Paul Conrad/The Aspen Times

Patti Clapper fended off a second challenge from Tim Mooney to retain her seat as county commissioner in District 1. And Rachel Richards beat Jim True in a close vote in District 2.The atmosphere was festive at the Double Dog Pub, home base for Clapper’s supporters. A howl went up when early numbers came in, and Clapper was flushed and happy.”It gives me confidence that I’m doing a good job,” Clapper said of her 4,161-to-2,070 defeat of Mooney. The campaign was a chance to hear from her constituents, and she promised to bring a whole new energy and purpose to her last four year term as commissioner.”I feel tremendous gratitude to everyone who’s helped on the campaign,” said Richards said. She beat Jim True in District 2 by a margin of 3,249 to 2,928. Richards was happy but still reticent before hearing the final results.She said she is daunted by the job ahead of her, but would roll up her sleeves and dig in.”I’m the new kid on the block, so there’s a lot to learn,” she said. She looks forward to joining the team of county commissioners and said that transportation is at the forefront of her agenda. Richards has high hopes for the re-evaluation of the record regarding the decision on the controversial Entrance to Aspen issue, which is expected on Nov. 16, and said that momentum is building for consensus in the community.”He’s a tremendous fellow,” she said of True. “It’s been a tough race.”Early results put True in the lead. Extremely competitive in the city of Aspen, he took precincts on the east side that were expected to go to Richards. But the final tally was a disappointment, he said.”She’s an excellent campaigner and has done a good job,” True said from a quiet campaign camp at Bentley’s.Clapper, who will catch a flight to represent the county in the National Association of Regional Councils in San Diego today, said she will jump right back into the issues at hand, like getting the budget passed and getting a real estate transfer tax for the county.Earlier in the day, Mooney said, “I feel like I’m throwing a party and I don’t know if anyone’s going to show.”Mooney called the campaign simple and straightforward.Charles Agar’s e-mail address is cagar@aspentimes.com.