5 - Mayor controversy captures national attention

Carmen Kontur-Gronquist was voted out of the Arlington mayor's office after racy photos surfaced.

Arlington's political scene has calmed in recent months.

Former mayor Carmen Kontur-Gronquist made national news early in the year after photos of the mayor posing in bra and underwear in the town fire hall appeared on her MySpace page.

The mayor and her underwear were hot topics on the blogosphere, Dr. Phil and newspapers around the nation.

Angry constituents mounted a recall campaign that divided the town in half with Kontur-Gronquist getting the boot - barely. The recall passed by a margin of only three votes.

Kontur-Gronquist cried foul, accusing city and county workers of throwing out certain votes and failing to send ballots to some of her supporters. She initiated a lawsuit to have the recall results thrown out, but lost her bid.

Most recently, she launched a write-in campaign against Jeff Bufton to get her old job back . The final count on election day was 173 to 122, with Bufton getting the nod.

Bufton, who also served as acting mayor after the recall, is ready to shake off the events of 2008.

"It's back to business," he said. "I want to promote continuity within the community and get back on track. We're looking to move forward."

The council's agenda is full. High on the list is beefing up the city's industrial infrastructure, siting a retirement center and easing a housing shortage. The council, he said, has a full plate.

Bufton seems eager for people to see Arlington as more than the home of a controversy involving a former mayor. Arlington, he said, is a great place to live and a town with plenty of tourism potential.

"It's kind of the front door to the south end," he said.

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