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Roundup of local and regional races, ballot measures

Roundup of local and regional races, ballot measures
(Cory Ryan/Getty Images News/Thinkstock)

Local Final votes …………… 11/7/18

A long night counting ballots at several Panhandle counties as challenges with machines in Box Butte and a declared write-in candidate in one Scotts Bluff County race slowed the process and kept election workers working into Wednesday morning.

Final results becoming available at about 12:30 this morning in Box Butte County…. and 1:30 this morning in Scotts Bluff County.

Turnout was deemed to have been strong locally compared to previous mid-term elections, as 10,778 registered voters cast a ballot in this year’s general election in Scotts Bluff County for a turnout of just over 44% according to the Secretary of State’s office.

Contested Candidate Races ……………11/7/18

It appears there will be three new faces on the Scottsbluff City Council following last night’s election. Nathan Green received the most votes with 22.2 percent of the total, followed by Terry Schaub with 20.9 percent and Jeanne McKerrigan with 19.8 percent. The unofficial vote total shows just 19 votes separating McKerrigan in the third spot and incumbent city council member Jordan Colwell.

In the other local contested city council race in Terrytown’s Ward 2, challenger Mike Minzey received 83 votes or just over 59 percent, with incumbent Jerry Green receiving 57 votes, or 41 percent of the ballots cast.

In the hotly contested Mitchell mayor’s race, Council President Dave Curtis was the winner, defeating incumbent Brian Taylor and write-in candidate Paul Murrell.

Incumbents In Alliance, the top candidates for city council were Earl Jones, Mike Dafney and Annora Bentley. Jones receiving support from 33.5 percent of voters, with Dafney at just over 31 percent and Annora Bentley at 29.6 percent.

Incumbents were re-elected to the city council in Sidney, with Bob Olsen receiving 1,257 votes and Roger Galloway selected on 1,219 ballots.

In the Kimball city council race, Matt Bright received the most support with 516 tallies, or 34.6 percent of the vote. Bright will be joined by incumbent Christy Warner, who will return for another term after receiving 495 votes, or just over 33 percent of the total.

Banner County Attorney James Zimmerman was re-elected Tuesday night, defeating challenger Mark Kovarik by a margin of 210 to 98.

Ballot Measures ………………… 11/7/18

Voters in Scottsbluff have once again rejected increasing the local sales and use tax by a 1/2 cent to fund infrastructure. 60 percent of those casting votes disapproved of the LB 357 optional tax, with 40 percent voting in favor. An LB 357 proposal in 2016 was also defeated, but during this effort the projects that would have received funding were detailed in the ballot language, such as paving all of 20th Street and East Overland, and helping pay for an aquatics center.

Gering residents have approved a re-authorization of the LB 840 half cent sales tax for economic development… More than 62 percent of the votes cast were a ‘Yes’…. they also approved the 2nd half of that proposition with more than 67 percent in favor. That portion allowed the city to use up to $300,000 of the additional sales and use tax generated for economic development projects.

Alliance voters also approving an extension of their 1/2 cent sales tax for economic development… approving the tax in proposition 1 with 66 percent in favor, and approving prop 2 fuding the economic development plan with nearly 65 percent saying ‘yes’.

Meanwhile, the majority of voters in Bridgeport rejected adding an LB 840 sales tax to their current tax rate. Proposition 1 to approve the tax for economic development failed with 57 percent of those casting a ballot against the proposal, and just under 43 percent in favor.

And in the village of Harrison, voters approved increasing their sales tax by 1/2 a percent. 71 residents cast a ‘yes’ vote, compared to 50 voting against.

School Boards ……………….. 11/7/18

Incumbents on both the Scottsbluff and Gering school boards will be returning for another term. In Scottsbluff, Mark Lang and Ruth Kozal received 27.8 and 26.3 percent of the vote, respectively. They will be joined by Lori Browning, who picked up support from just over 25% of voters in that school district. Meanwhile in Gering, all three incumbents will return to that school board. Brian Copsey received the most votes with 2,077, folowed by Brady Shaul with 2,023 and Mary Winn with 2,006

It appears Minatare school board incumbents Val Gutierrez and Jana Schwartz will be joined by newcomer Coby Ross following last night’s election. Schwartz receiving more than 35 percent of ballots cast, followed by Ross with nearly 29 percent and Gutierrez with nearly 18 percent. However, just six votes in the unofficial tally separated Gutierrez from challenger Jon Leider.

In Morrill, two new faces will appear on the school board, as Lisa Kaufman and Bill Watson each received more than 26 percent of the votes cast in that school district. They’ll be joined by incumbent David Sherrod, who came in 3rd with support from more than 19 percent of district voters.

Incumbent Bayard school board members Kim Kildow and Donna Stuart will be joined by Becky Henkel on that board. Kildow had support from more than 27 percent of district voters, followed by Henkel at 26.6 percent of the vote and Stuart at 26 percent.

Challenger Greg Wickard will be joining incumbents Justic Corman and Jeffrey Pohl on the Bridgeport school board. Corman was the top vote-getter with 767, followed by Wickard with 638 and Pohl with 596.

Alliance voters returning one incumbent to the local school board, along with two challengers. Tim Kollars received 26 percent of ballots cast, followed by Amanda Mockerman with over 25 percent and Edison Red Nest III with more than 17 percent of the votes cast last night.

In the race for the Kimball school board, two incumbents will be returning to that panel. Matthew Shoup received the most votes with 819, followed by challenger Travis Cook with 721. Lynn Vogel, the other incumbent running this year, received 516 votes from Kimball residents.


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