2017-11-16 / Front Page

Clapperton, Pelter, Tremble Seated

School Bond Passes at Cedarville
By Stephanie Fortino

The mayor and newly elected city council members were sworn into office at a special meeting of the St. Ignace City Council Monday, November 13. Mayor Connie Litzner and councilmembers Jim Clapperton and Jay Tremble were reelected to their positions, while Kayla Pelter was elected to the council for the first time. Councilman Luke Paquin was appointed by Mayor Litzner and approved by council to serve as the Mayor Pro- Tempore, replacing Steven Paquin, who did not seek reelection after his term was up this year. Pictured are (from left): Jim Clapperton, Kayla Pelter, Paul Fullerton, Mayor Litzner, Luke Paquin, Jay Tremble, Robert St. Louis, and new City Manager Michael Stelmaszek.The mayor and newly elected city council members were sworn into office at a special meeting of the St. Ignace City Council Monday, November 13. Mayor Connie Litzner and councilmembers Jim Clapperton and Jay Tremble were reelected to their positions, while Kayla Pelter was elected to the council for the first time. Councilman Luke Paquin was appointed by Mayor Litzner and approved by council to serve as the Mayor Pro- Tempore, replacing Steven Paquin, who did not seek reelection after his term was up this year. Pictured are (from left): Jim Clapperton, Kayla Pelter, Paul Fullerton, Mayor Litzner, Luke Paquin, Jay Tremble, Robert St. Louis, and new City Manager Michael Stelmaszek.The mayor and newly elected city council members were sworn into office at a special meeting of the St. Ignace City Council Monday, November 13. Mayor Connie Litzner and councilmembers Jim Clapperton and Jay Tremble were reelected to their positions, while Kayla Pelter was elected to the council for the first time. Councilman Luke Paquin was appointed by Mayor Litzner and approved by council to serve as the Mayor Pro- Tempore, replacing Steven Paquin, who did not seek reelection after his term was up this year. Pictured are (from left): Jim Clapperton, Kayla Pelter, Paul Fullerton, Mayor Litzner, Luke Paquin, Jay Tremble, Robert St. Louis, and new City Manager Michael Stelmaszek.In a tight race for the St. Ignace City Council, Jim Clapperton, Kayla Pelter, and Jay Tremble were elected Tuesday, November 7, while unopposed incumbent Connie Litzner secured another term as mayor.

The Les Cheneaux Public School millage passed 269 to 118.

In the City of St. Ignace, 311 of the city’s 2,071 registered voters cast ballots, for a 15% voter turnout. There were 42 absentee ballots cast in the election.

Voter turnout for the school mileage election was better. Voters in Clark Township and Marquette Township considered the mileage, but the voting districts were combined for the election, Mackinac County Clerk Lori Johnston said. Between the two townships, 387 of the possible 1,702 voters cast ballots, for a 22.7% voter turnout. There were 104 absentee ballots cast.

The council election and school proposal were the only items on the ballot in Mackinac County.

The Mackinac County Canvassing Board met and certified the election results Wednesday, November 8.

“They were only here for the afternoon,” Ms. Johnston said. “There were no problems and everything went smoothly.”

According to Michigan’s election law, a candidate has until the sixth day after the canvassers finish their report to request a recount. As of Monday, November 13, no candidates had expressed interest in asking for a recount, Ms. Johnston said.

St. Ignace City Council

Five candidates vied for three positions on the city council, as Councilman Steve Paquin did not seek reelection. Each councilmember serves four years.

Incumbent Mr. Clapperton received 192 votes, newcomer Ms. Pelter received 189 votes, and incumbent Mr. Tremble received 187 votes. Unsuccessful in their bids were William LaLonde, who received 186 votes, and Benjamin Eisenman, who received 67 votes.

Mrs. Litzner received 239 votes, securing another two years as mayor of St. Ignace.

Les Cheneaux Community Schools

The Les Cheneaux Community Schools bond proposal will collect 1.38 mills for seven years, generating about $1.5 million for building upgrades at the Cedarville district.

The project will include replacing the windows in the high school, paving the parking lots, replacing the flooring and fixtures in the locker room, new partitions, renovations in the gymnasium lobby bathrooms, new exterior doors, replacing a portion of the roof, upgraded plumbing, and a new boiler system.

The millage will not increase taxes as it replaces a 1.38 mills levy for new buses that expires this year.

Under the proposed millage, a property owner with $50,000 in taxable assets would pay $69 per year.

New Election Machines

New ballot tabulation machines were used in the local elections. The machines are the only ones currently in use in the county, Ms. Johnston said, noting that other precincts will receive machines with their upcoming elections. They replace the old machines that were out of date at about 12 years old.

All of the voting machines throughout the state will be upgraded by the next state-wide election in August 2018. Each county can decide when to implement the new systems, and could have used the machines as early as the primary election in August, if applicable.

Ms. Johnston decided to implement the machines early in Mackinac County, in time for the November election.

“Our machines were in such rough shape,” she said, “I wanted to get going on it.”

Implementation was also easier for this election because only two precincts, rather the entire county, had elections.

The state offered three voting machine vendors to each county in the state, and clerks could pick the machine that best served their needs. This summer, Ms. Johnston hosted the Mackinac County local clerks to test each option. They collectively chose the Dominion Voting Systems offered by Governmental Business Systems, which the county has worked with for more than 10 years. The same voting machine was chosen by most precincts in the Upper Peninsula, she said, noting the company has representatives in the area to service the machines and provide support.

The biggest difference voters will notice about the new machines is the improved handicap accessible machine that features a touch screen.

Voters also used permanent markers to fill out their ballots rather than pencils. The ballots have to be filled out with marker or pen, Ms. Johnston said, and markers were chosen because pen ink tended to smear on the ballots if they were fed into the machine too quickly after voting.

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