Fair Haven, a town along the border with New York just west of Rutland, is home to 2,500 people and does not have a human mayor. Town Manager Joseph Gunter heard about a town in Michigan that voted for an honorary pet mayor, and he thought it would be fun to do the same thing in Fair Haven.
For just $5, residents could enter their pets in the race, with every dollar going toward the building of a community playground.
The ballot of 16 pets was open to all town residents. Most of the other candidates were dogs and cats; a gerbil named Crystal also was a candidate.
With 13 votes, Lincoln eked out a victory over Sammie the dog, who received 10 votes. The other candidates combined for 30 votes.
As the town’s first honorary pet mayor, Lincoln will attend events throughout the year and already has plans to march in a parade on Memorial Day. He will officially take office on Tuesday.
The balloting for pet mayor was held alongside the regular Town Meeting Day vote, but any town resident could vote.
“Kids got to vote. So when they went to the polling place with their parents, they were able to participate.”
Not only was $100 raised, but it was also “a great way to introduce the elementary school kids to local government.”
– Gunter told The Associated Press.