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Several Write-Ins Will Be Needed To Fill City Election Vacancies

By Staff | Sep 22, 2009

Write-in candidates will be needed to fill ten vacancies in various communities in Palo Alto County during the upcoming Municipal Elections. There will be contested elections in three communities in the county, and a special public measure is on the ballot in another community. The filing deadline for the Municipal Elections was at 5 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 17, with nomination papers being filed with the county commissioner of elections at that time.

Contested elections will take place in Emmetsburg, Cylinder and Ayrshire. For residents in Emmetsburg, there will be two contested elections on the ballot. At-large city council member Brian Campbell, the incumbent, is running unopposed for his seat, but in City Council Ward One, incumbent council member Steve Finer is being challenged by Ted Ellis. In Council Ward Three, council member Pam Smith, the incumbent, is being challenged for the position by Brian Malm.

The city of Ayrshire will also boast a pair of contested elections. The first, to fill an unexpired term on the Ayrshire City Council, features three persons running for one seat. Announced candidates for the position are Brian Kathman, Jennifer Buettner and Anesa Bailey. Additionally, two city council seats are up for election, with incumbent Pauline Miller running for re-election to her seat. Filing to fill the council seats in Ayrshire along with Miller are Michael Garrelts, Gerri Jessen and Jeff Moore. Current council member Kurt Moore has filed nomination papers for the Mayor’s post, where long-time Mayor Robert Heiman chose not to run for re-election.

In Cylinder, incumbent Mayor Art Mueller is running unopposed for re-election to his post, but six candidates are vying for five seats on the city council. Incumbent candidates Kurt Bonnstetter, Harry Bormann, Kevin Long, Deb Weisbrod and Dave Waldschmidt have all filed for re-election, with Peg Lewis running for one of the seats on the council.

The write-in ballot will come into play exclusively in the community of Curlew, where no one submitted nomination papers for the office of mayor or any of the five city council seats. Currently, Donita Hellickson is serving as mayor, with Barbara Barrett, Stacy Lomax, Wyman Travis, Rick Hurley and Rick Watts holding the five council seats. All positions in Curlew are for two-year terms of office.

A write-in candidate will win election to a vacancy on the Ruthven City Council, as only one person filed nomination papers for the two open seats. Council member Brian Hawk chose not to run for re-election, leaving his seat to be filled by a write-in candidate. Incumbent council member Jay Schoning filed for re-election, along with incumbent Mayor Charles C. Oppedal, who is running unopposed for re-election.

In Rodman, two write-ins will come into play, as Mayor Georgia Elbert is not running for re-election and no nominations were filed to fill the mayor’s post. The second write-in will be needed to fill one of the five city council seats up for election. Only four candidates filed for election to the seats on the council, including incumbent Rose Fokken. Also filing nomination papers for the Rodman Council seats were Danny E. Hutchison, Jean Hyslop and Ronald Thilges. Choosing not to run for re-election were council members Ruby Besch, Jack Hough, Teresa Bleuer and Anita Michelle Hunter. All terms in Rodman are also for two years in length.

Voters in the city of Mallard will also need to fill one of three vacancies on the city council with a write-in candidate. Incumbent council members Kyle Auten and Michael Harman have both filed for re-election to their seats, while James Gehrt filed for the mayor’s post, which is being vacated by long-time mayor Carl Heldt, who chose not to run for re-election.

In addition, Mallard residents will be asked to vote on a Public Measure, which would change the current Mallard Public Library Board to five members.

For voters in West Bend, a new mayor will be elected, as Robert Klepper did not file for re-election. Marilyn D. Schutz filed for the mayor’s seat, while incumbent council member Bruce Helleseth filed for re-election to his seat. Joe H. Eoriatti did not file for re-election, and Jeff W. Miller has filed nomination papers for Eoriatti’s seat on the council.

All four incumbents in Graettinger are unopposed for re-election to their respective seats on the city government. Mayor Kevin Hanson is running for another term in office, along with council members Wayne W. Anderson, Michael Flaherty and Ken Smith.

Municipal Elections will be Tuesday, Nov. 3