Daily Staff Report
FRONT ROYAL -- Mayor Eugene R. Tewalt and Vice Mayor Bret W. Hrbek lost their bids for re-election in Tuesday's town election.
Timothy M. Darr was elected mayor, defeating Tewalt, 958 votes to 605, according to complete but unofficial returns reported by the State Board of Elections.
Hollis L. Tharpe led the field of candidates seeking the three council seats with 891 votes. Also elected were incumbent Councilmen N. Shae Parker, with 636 votes, and Thomas H. Sayre with 760 votes.
Challenger Joe E. Swiger finished fourth in the balloting with 616 votes and challenger Robert M. Tennett Jr. finished sixth with 487 votes.
The voting comes in the wake of months of controversy among town officials. Allegations have been made concerning conflicts of interest and bribery related to a proposed solar power project at the town's Royal Phoenix industrial property. The allegations have resulted in calls for a criminal investigation by at least one incumbent councilman.
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