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Contested Races Shape Up For General Election

By Staff | Sep 5, 2012

With the official close of filing on Wednesday, August 29, the ballot will be full for voters in Palo Alto County during the November 6 General Elections. Several locally contested elections, including a four-way race for the office of Palo Alto County Sheriff, will be joined by a Special Public Measure question on the county ballot.

A late addition to the ballot will be in the race for the Palo Alto County Sheriff, as Todd D. Suhr will appear on the ballot through Nomination by Petition. Also appearing on the ballot will be Independent candidate Russell B. Jergens, along with Democratic candidate Lynn J. Schultes and Republican candidate Darrin E. Adams.

A pair of contested seats on the Palo Alto County Board of Supervisors will also appear on the ballot, as two current incumbent supervisors, Democrat Leo E. Goeders and Republican Edward Noonan will be running for the Third District seat on the board. The two were placed in the same district following the mandatory re-districting process in 2011.

For the seat in Supervisor District Five, the voters will choose between Democratic candidate Linus J. Solberg and Republican Bertha Mathis. The final seat on the Board of Supervisors is an uncontested election in District Four, where Republican incumbent supervisor Ronald D. Graettinger is running unopposed for re-election to the post.

For the office of Palo Alto County Auditor, Republican candidate Carmen Moser is running unopposed for the position. Moser is also the incumbent, having been appointed to the position by the Board of Supervisors earlier this year after the retirement of Auditor Gary Leonard.

A special Public Measure will also appear on the county-wide ballot: “Should the number of supervisors on the Palo Alto County Board of Supervisors be reduced from its current number of five (5) members to three (3) members?”

Several non-partisan offices will appear on the ballot locally, starting with County Public Hospital Trustee, where Patrick Joyce, Tammy Naig and Terry Naig, are all running for re-election to the three positions on the Palo Alto County Hospital Board. There are also three vacancies for positions as Palo Alto County Soil and Water Conservation District Commissioners. Running for those vacancies are incumbent commissioners Joel Horsley and Clint Young, along with Anita Fisher.

A total of four seats are up for election on the Palo Alto County Agricultural Extension Council. Incumbent Anita Fisher is running for re-election and running for the other three seats are Denise M. Flaherty, Coleen Ruddy and John Banwart.

Several Township Trustee positions will also appear on the ballot, In Fairfield Township, incumbents Michael J. Reding and David Bolte are both running for re-election. The situation is the same in Independence Township, where incumbents Tim Naig and Stewart Ohrtman are running for re-election.

Gary Garrelts and Mike Sikora are the incumbent trustees running for re-election in Silver Lake Township and running for re-election in West Bend Township are the incumbent trustees Dennis Barber and Edward Schmalen.

Voters in the City of Ruthven will also have to vacancies to fill for city government. The name of David J. Kirk will appear on the ballot for Mayor of the City of Ruthven. Kirk is the incumbent, having been appointed to the position last year by the city council. Also running for re-election will be incumbent City Council member Dave Forey.

The final day to register for voting in the 2012 General Election will be on Saturday, Oct. 27, as the Palo Alto County Auditor’s Office will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. for voter registration and absentee voting.

Voters should have received a new voter registration card earlier this year in the mail explaining polling places. Any resident who did not receive this information or has questions may contact the County Auditor’s Office at 712-852-2924.