2016-10-27 / Front Page

Election Is Nov. 8

By Erich T. Doerr

Tuesday, November 8, is Election Day. All voters across Mackinac County will cast their ballots on a millage to support the construction of a new jail. The jail proposition seeks 0.76124 mill, or a 76¢ tax on each $1,000 taxable value on property for 20 years. The money raised would be used to design, construct, and furnish a new jail building and repurposing the current jail area for other uses.

All five seats on the Mackinac County Board of Commissioners are up for election this year, with competitive races in District 2 and District 3. In District 2, Republican Daniel “Dan” Litzner is running against independent Nora Massey, with the winner replacing the retiring Lawrence Leveille. The election will involve voters in Brevort Township, Moran Township, Hendricks Township, Garfield Township Precinct 2B, and Hudson Township.

Incumbent Democrat David Sudol is up against Republican challenger Paul Krause in the District 3 race. The election will include St. Ignace’s Precinct 1B, St. Ignace Township, and Marquette Township Precinct 1A.

The other three races are unopposed this year, with incumbent Republican candidates as the only candidates on the ballot. Jim Hill, the board chair, is the only candidate running in District 1, the area that includes Garfield Township Precinct 1 and Precinct 2A, Portage Township, and Newton Township. Diane Patrick is the lone candidate in District 4 for Clark Township and Marquette Township Precinct 1B voters. Calvin McPhee is unopposed in District 5 and will appear on ballots for voters in St. Ignace Precinct 1A, the City of Mackinac Island, and Bois Blanc Township.

There are two competitive elections for county officials. Republican Lori Wisner Johnston and Democrat Judy St. Louis are running against each other for clerk, while incumbent Republican Stuart Spencer faces Democrat challenger Kayla Pelter in the race for county prosecutor.

The other county races are unopposed. Republican Jennifer Goudreau is facing no balloted opposition in her bid to become treasurer, with incumbent Republicans Sheriff Scott Strait, Register of Deeds Deborah Holle, County Road Commissioner Lester Livermore, Jr., and Surveyor Jeff Davis also unopposed. Profiles on these races will be published in next week’s issue of The St. Ignace News, November 3.

City, Village, and Townships Elections

On Mackinac Island, a millage on the ballot for the Mackinac Island Public Schools is worth 7.8 mills for three years, from 2016 through 2018. It would raise about $1,440,000 a year to cover operating costs.

The Village of Mackinaw City’s election, taking place in both of its townships and overseen by Wawatam Township as Michigan villages no longer conduct their own elections, will see voters fill several key positions. Three trustee positions are open on the village council, with incumbents Tom Chastain, Paul Michalak, Belinda Mollen, and Mario Rodriguez running to maintain their positions against challenger Enzo Lieghio. There are no candidates on the ballot for a partial trustee term ending in November 2018. Incumbent Village President Robert Heilman, Clerk Lana Jaggi, and Treasurer Patty Peppler are running for reelection unopposed.

This year’s election will bring wholesale changes to St. Ignace Township as new people will fill every township role up for election this year. Incumbent Democrat Trustee Steven Campbell is the only member of the board who chose to run again this year and is now unopposed in his bid to become township supervisor. Republican Kimberly Hagen is running against Democrat Sheri Massey Oja to become clerk, while Republican Mark Eby is facing Democrat Tina Jones Massey in the race to become treasurer. Two trustee positions are open with four new candidates seeking to fill the role; Republicans Glenn McKenzie and Allen Mitchell and Democrats Staci Nelson and Matt Oja.

The voters in Clark Township will see a millage on their ballots to help the township’s volunteer fire department acquire a new rescue truck and equipment. It is for 0.85 mill for two years and will raise about $159,00 a year.

The township has a competitive race to become the new treasurer as current independent Trustee Jason Sherlund challenges Republican Mark Clymer for the role. Among incumbents, Republican Township Supervisor Gary Reid and Democrat Clerk Susan Rutledge are unopposed in their reelection bids with incoming independent trustees Sarah Patton and Pat Schuster also unchallenged.

The race for township supervisor is a contested one in Brevort Township as incumbent Republican Ed Serwach faces Democrat challenger Luci Wallace, a current township trustee. Incumbent Republican Clerk Heather Bird is unopposed in her election. Newcomer Brian Olsen, a Republican, is facing no opposition in his bid to become township treasurer, while fellow Republicans Jonathan Litzner and William Orr are running to fill the two trustee positions.

There are no competitive races in Moran Township. Township Supervisor Jim Durm, Clerk Kris Vallier, and Treasurer Sue Dionne are all running unopposed as Democrats. The trustee race features Chuck Malcolm and Mark Spencer running unopposed as Republicans.

There are no competitive elections for township positions in Garfield Township with five incumbents all set for reelection without any opposition on the ballot. Democrat Donald Butkovich is the only candidate for township supervisor. Republicans will fill the other positions as Clerk Paula Fillman, Treasurer Debra Bennett, and trustees Clarence John Ketcher, Sr., and Duncan MacArthur are also unopposed.

The Hendricks Township election features a competitive race for township supervisor as incumbent Republican Ron Frazier runs against Democrat Howard Hood. The township’s other races are all unopposed as incumbents Republican Clerk Barbara Price, Democrat Treasurer Cheryl Hood, and Republican Constable Jerry Eifler plus Republican Trustee candidates William Cheesman and Ken Collier face no opposition.

The race for two trustee seats is lively in Hudson Township. Incumbent Democrats Gary Derusha and David Livermore are running against Republican challenger Karen Kerridge as they look to maintain their positions. The township’s other races all feature unopposed Democrat incumbents as Township Supervisor Al Garavaglia, Clerk Barbara Kerridge, and Treasurer Jacqueline Prout seek reelection.

There is a competitive township supervisor race in Newton Township as incumbent Republican Fred Burton is running against Democrat challenger Bob Brotherton this year. The race for clerk is also competitive as incumbent Democrat Nikki Tremblay is running against Republican Sherry Salter. Two new faces will fill the township’s trustee positions as Republicans Keith Keller and Neil McArthur are running against Democrat Ronald O’Neil. Republican Marilyn Strickland is unopposed in her bid for another term as treasurer.

The races in Portage Township this year are all uncontested. Republican Deputy Treasurer Marlene Porter will likely be elected to move up to treasurer, as while Democrat incumbent Joni Davis is also on the ballot, Ms. Davis has withdrawn from the race and is not seeking reelection. Republican candidates are also unopposed in the township, including newcomer township supervisor Steven Sicinski and incumbent Clerk Pat MacLachian and Trustees Patrick Abram and Edgar Holbrook.

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