Bowie voters voiced approval of the status quo in city elections this week, by returning to office the mayor and five of the six council members and by opposing the proposed annexation of Bowie Race Course.
Otherwise, apathy was the keynote as only 2,551 of 8,585 (29.7 percent) of the eligible voters cast ballots.
Mayor Audrey E. Scott, easily elected to a third two-year term by collecting 1,871 votes to 687 for challenger Alvin Lucchi, immediately pledged an effort to encourage more people to vote.
"It was a lower turnout than usual, which is disppointing since it was a beautiful day and there was an advisory question on the ballot which usually attracts more votes," Scott said. "The first thing I'm going to do is get election day changed to the first Tuesay of April instead of the first Monday. I'll bet a lot of people will be going to vote tommorrow (Tuesady). m
"Generally, I think people are pleased with the status quo. I'm very satisfied and happy, of course. I'm looking forward to serving Bowie with the same enthusiasm I have in the past four years," she added.
The only new member of the council will be Dick Padgett, who gathered 68 percent of the vote to unseat one-term incumbent John Bliss Cummings in District 3. Padgett, who closed out five years on the council with an eight-month stint as interim mayor in 1975, was the only challenger to mount an early campaign. The other challengers filed within 48 hours of the March 7 entry deadline.
"I think the transition will be relatively smooth, but there will be some irritation because I'm going to be agitating to get some things done," said Padgett, who will be sworn in with the other council members at Monday's meeting. "I intend to be extremely active on the council . . . I think some members of the council are looking forward to that."
Elsewhere, the incumbents had little difficulty holding their seats.Walter G. Planet earned a second term in District 1 with a comfortable 567-vote cushion over Walter Moylette. In District 2, Dick Logue, the senior member of the council with seven years service, received more than twice the votes cast for Paul Champion, who also lost to Logue in 1977. At large representative Michael F. DiMario, a one-term veteran, had the toughest fight, but still turned back Eugene Kiley's challenge by 395 votes.
Herb Sachs, who has not had a challenge since winning his District 4 seat in 1974, and District 5 member Norman L. Cooper were unopposed.
Citizens voted for one council member in each race with the districts serving only as a residency requirement.
"I think our council has gotten along well together," Scott said. "We respect each other's differences. We look forward to continuing to work together. Padgett knows us all. He's been on the council before. He knows the system, so it won't be hard to break him in."
In the advisory question asking whether Bowie should annex Bowie Race Course into the city limits, 1,159 voters opposed the move and 1,043 supported it.