Armstrong, Finch snare top votes

Kerry Finch

Kerry Finch

AFTER a controversial campaign in Rosevears and nail- biting finish in Huon, two triumphant candidates are poised to be officially announced as winners of the weekend's upper house election.

Incumbent MLC Kerry Finch will be recognised as the re- elected member for Rosevears in Launceston this morning.

No stranger to a declaration of the polls ceremony, the Legislative Council veteran said the novelty of the traditional occasion had not yet worn off.

"I'm looking forward to sharing the moment with my family, friends and team as much as I ever have," Mr Finch said.

Claims of smear and dirty tactics plagued a two-way race between Mr Finch and Liberal candidate Don Morris for the Northern upper house seat.

However, Mr Finch said he did not want to be a "nasty winner", and was grateful to have been approached by Premier Will Hodgman following his resounding victory.

"He has agreed to meet face-to- face in the future to talk about the how we can repair the relationship between the government and Rosevears electorate," he said.

"It's not about bearing grudges, it's about doing my work as legislator. I've got to honour the government's role and do the best I can."

Mr Finch said he welcomed successful Huon candidate Robert Armstrong to the Legislation Council soon after hearing news of his victory.

Mr Armstrong fended off a spirited political comeback effort from former Liberal minister Peter Hodgman to snare the Southern seat.

A see-sawing distribution of preferences was finalised Monday night, with Mr Armstrong the last candidate standing after each of his opponents was knocked out of the contest.

Mr Armstrong said after a heart-pounding wait while votes were cut up, the win was starting to sink in yesterday.

His election win will be officially recognised at a declaration of the polls ceremony in Hobart tomorrow.

The Huon Valley mayor said settling into the house of review after years at the "coal face" of local government would be an interesting transition.

"I imagine I'm going to have a lot more reading to do, and my feet won't touch the ground for a couple of months, but I'm really looking forward to it," Mr Armstrong said.

The Legislative Council is set to resume on May 27.

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