CUMBERLAND — On Tuesday, Joe Siefker handily defeated Albert Tartaglia Jr. for the District 5 Cumberland Town Council seat, bringing an end to concern about whether Tartaglia, who recently announced plans to move to Germany, would be legally allowed to serve if elected.
Siefker, a Republican, received 108 votes to Tartaglia’s 51.
Incumbents Mark Reynold, a Democrat, and Anna Pea, a Republican, will maintain their seats on the council alongside Siefker. All three represent Hancock County residents who live in Cumberland, which straddles the Hancock-Marion county line.
Incumbent Siefker won his third term on the council, of which he currently serves as president. He enjoys serving his neighbors and feels he’s helped accomplish a variety of goals that are enhancing Cumberland, he said.
Going forward, he plans to work to attract new development to Cumberland and help move forward plans to build the Buck Creek Trail and connect it to the Pennsy Trail in northern Hancock County, he added.
He’s looking forward to the next four years, which are going to be an exciting time for Cumberland, he said.
“I’m going to try to make a big push in the next four years … to help the town and the citizens as best I can,” he said.
During his tenure, he said, the council has been fiscally responsible, completed 11 road projects in his district — which comprises about 700 Hancock County homes — and attracted several businesses to Cumberland.
Siefker, 51, works in radiation medicine at Franciscan St. Francis Health. He’s lived in Cumberland 13 years and said he has a record of being conservative with the town’s budget and has served his district well.
He thanked his opponent for a friendly race and for giving residents in the district an option.
“People getting out and getting involved is what it’s all about,” Siefker said.
Tartaglia, an accountant, was the only Libertarian in Hancock County to run for election this year. He had promised to present fresh ideas and give every topic that goes before the council thorough consideration before deciding whether to support it.
But last week, he announced he’s moving to Germany at the end of this month.
There were no immediate plans made by the Libertarian Party to replace him if he won the election, and Tartaglia maintained he could serve from a distance, a move the state’s election division suggested could be permissible under Indiana law.
He said he was proud to have 51 supporters cast a ballot in his favor, especially in light of his announcement last week that he was moving.
“Though the results weren’t what I hoped, I appreciate that they went out and did what they did,” he said. “It shows people in the area are open-minded to other ideas and are willing to see other ideas.”
Though he and his family are moving about 4,000 miles away later this month, Tartaglia promises to stay involved in the community and to return home once his duties in Germany are complete in three years.
Anna Pea was uncontested in the primary and will stay in her District 3 seat come January. Her district is comprised of all Hancock County residents.
During the next four years, residents can expect to see more balanced budgets, road resurfacing and quality economic development, she said.
“I feel like I just got started,” she said. “I’m just honored to be able to do this.”
Reynold serves Cumberland’s District 4, which straddles the Hancock-Marion county line. He’s a familiar face in Cumberland, having served multiple terms on the council, of which he was once president.
Cumberland Town Council;District 5
Joe Siefker, R;108
Alberta Tartaglia Jr., L;51