In Cedar City mayoral race count, Garth Green passes incumbent Maile Wilson Edwards

Mayor Willson Edwards narrowly held on to her seat late Tuesday, but a count of more mail-in ballot puts Green ahead.

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) A statue of Founder Fred Adams, at the Utah Shakespeare Festival in Cedar City, on Saturday, July 3, 2021.

The Cedar City mayor’s race has been a nail-biter since before polling locations opened on Election Day, and as additional mail-in ballots were tallied Wednesday, the electoral drama of the election has only escalated.

On Wednesday evening, the latest count of votes showed that retired businessman Garth Orwin Green has surpassed incumbent Mayor Maile Wilson Edwards by 119 votes, according to an unofficial Iron County count.

Ahead of Election Day, Wilson Edwards, the city’s first female mayor running a third term, received a majority of the mail-in ballot, 2,531 to 2,491, while a majority of the nearly 200 Cedar City residents who voted in-person on Election Day marked their ballots for Green.

But as more mail-in ballots were counted this week, Wilson Edwards’ narrow 16 vote lead eroded. A new count of total ballots showed Wednesday night that Green now led the race 3,645 to 3,526.

The St. George Spectrum and Daily News reported that the each mayoral candidate raised more than $100,000 for their election war chests, a massive amount of cash for mayoral race to govern a small city of around 35,000 people.

Green spent $129,000 on the race, while the incumbent mayor added $19,000 to her own campaign, according to the The Spectrum.