Incumbent Beck holds on to council seat

Laura Beck hugs her father, Tom Dukes, after winning a second four-year term on Folly Beach City Council.

FOLLY BEACH -- After choosing a new mayor and two new council members on April 6, voters in a runoff election on Tuesday chose to retain incumbent Council Member Laura Beck.

Beck, who received 57 percent of the votes cast Tuesday, will begin a second four-year term on council.

Susan Breslin, who led Beck slightly after the first round of voting, garnered 43 percent in the runoff.

About 33 percent of the island city's 2,011 registered voters turned out for the runoff.

Beck said her cause was aided by a significant turnout of "young families." Breslin acknowledged that Beck was very successful "getting out parents with children."

Breslin said it was good that many younger voters participated in the process, but said those voters apparently "identified with" Beck.

Beck, who in the campaign had emphasized her ability to listen and work with people of many backgrounds and opinions, said that was what earned her the victory. "A lot of people really understood the value of listening to the varying points of view we have here on Folly Beach," Beck said.

Beck and Breslin both greeted voters all day outside the polling place, and Beck said many voters told her they wished that both she and Breslin could be seated on council.

A special election will be held in July to fill the council seat left vacant April 6 when then-Councilman Tim Goodwin was elected mayor. Breslin, a city planning consultant, said Tuesday she's uncertain whether she will enter the race for that seat.