Challenger Carroll wins Blackfoot race


In an rare reversal of the Nov. 7 general election results, Marc Carroll will become mayor of Blackfoot.

Carroll received 674 votes during Tuesday’s runoff election, more than 55 percent of the total, while incumbent Mayor Paul Loomis received 542 votes, about 44 percent.

Watching the final results tallied at the Bingham County Courthouse, Carroll’s mind went blank.

“You watch when reporters interview election winners, and they always say ‘I’m humbled and overcome with humility.’ And it always seemed like a trite thing to say, but it really is overwhelming and humbling,” Carroll said. “It is settling in now.”

Tuesday’s result marks a dramatic departure from the general election, which placed Carroll more than 15 percent behind Loomis. Since 2000, the only other time a Gem State mayoral runoff elected a different winner than the primary was during Eagle’s 2007 race.

Carroll said two additional forums after the general election likely made the difference. The events were styled closer to a traditional debate with audience-sourced questions.

“We wanted something that would involve the audience more, and it was a lot more interactive,” Carroll said.

Carroll said his prior experience as a banker and Idaho National Laboratory manager provides him skills necessary to succeed in the mayor’s seat. He said the city needs stronger business and preventative maintenance plans.

Carroll is an advocate of zero-based budgeting, where all expenses are analyzed and re-justified every budget cycle. He also said Blackfoot needs to forge a stronger identity in order to attract more business and grow the tax base.

“We need a reason for individuals to buy homes here, and for businesses to locate here,” he said.

Carroll said Loomis entered the courthouse as results became final, and offered to begin the mayoral transition tomorrow.

“That’s Paul’s personality,” Carroll said. “He wants what’s best for Blackfoot.”

Reporter Kevin Trevellyan can be reached at 208-542-6762.