It took 14 rounds of voting, but Battle Creek City Commissioners selected Deb Owens as Mayor and Lynn Ward Gray as Vice Mayor Wednesday night.
The commission deadlocked for several hours, split between Owens and David Walters who was Battle Creek’s mayor for the past year.
Battle Creek Enquirer reporter Jennifer Bowman told WMUK's Gordon Evans that the deadlock lasted for so long because Commissioner Susan Baldwin was not at the meeting as she recovers from surgery. That left four commissioners voting for each candidate.
Ultimately Walters decided to switch his vote from himself to Owens to break the deadlock. But Owens said Battle Creek should reconsider how it picks the mayor and vice mayor. Bowman says that's an often-discussed idea. But it would require changing the city charter.