Highlights Of Municipal Election

Date posted - November 7, 2013

voting machineNorthwest Iowa — Here are some highlights of the municipal election on Tuesday.

Sheldon Mayor Katricia Meendering defeated challengers Joel Bousema and Dan Van Gorp. Meendering had nearly 50 percent of the vote, with about 36 percent going to Van Gorp, and about 14 percent going to Bousema.

For the Sheldon City Council, Zach Sawyer defeated incumbent David Popkes by a margin of about 71 percent to 29 percent. Challenger Randy Fonkert defeated Duane Seehusen by a margin of about 62 percent to 38 percent.

Orange City mayor Les Douma decided not to seek re-election, so his term expires at the end of the year. Deb De Haan defeated current City Council member Mick Snieder for the right to take over for Douma on January First. About 54 percent of voters picked De Haan to 46 percent for Snieder.

Orange City voters also approved a measure that asked if the City of Orange City should be authorized to increase the existing hotel and motel tax from the current rate of 5% to a new rate of 7%. It passed by a margin of about 70-30.

Rock Rapids voters defeated a municipal band levy. The tax would have been levied at a rate not to exceed 13.5 cents per $1,000 valuation, and would have been worth about $9200 annually to the band. The margin was about 77 percent no, and about 33 percent yes. There’s no word yet if the band will still be formed without the assistance of the tax.

In Hospers, there’s an interesting situation. There were two seats available, but only one candidate filed. That candidate, Darren Hulst, was of course, elected. However, no one got a majority of the write-in vote, so that’s still up in the air. The Sioux County Auditor’s office reports that a number of people received write-in votes:
Receiving two votes were: Greg Hansen, Fred Falkema, Ben Whitmore, John Klynsma, Emily Johnson, and Kevin Kooistra; and two people wrote in simply, “Arnie VW”.

The other people whose names were written in only received one vote. The Secretary of State’s Office has been contacted by the Auditor’s Office to find out what happens next.

In Paullina, there was a similar situation with only one candidate filing for a council position. That was Jay Jones, and he was elected. However, there was a definitive winner for the second seat. The O’Brien County Auditor’s Office reports that Dan Schreck was the write-in winner.

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