Upcoming election features important local decisions

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While the national implications of the upcoming election have received plenty of attention, area voters have important decisions to make as well.  In addition to filling council seats in Peterson and Rushford Village, area citizens will decide on new school board members, as well as the status of an operating referendum for R-P schools. Here’s a preview of the ballot decisions facing area voters on Tuesday, Nov. 6.

Peterson City Council

 Tim Hallum will be running unopposed for another term as Peterson Mayor. Lisa Price will be running unopposed to fill out the remainder of a term she was appointed to fill after a previous Peterson City Council member moved to Houston. Unless she’s defeated by a write-in candidate, Price will fill out the last two years of that term. There are two four-year seats open on the Peterson City Council with three people running for those spots. Voters will choose between incumbents Gail Boyum and Dave Colbenson, with Pete Erickson also in the running for a spot. Peterson residents will vote at Peterson City Hall from 7 a.m.-8 p.m.

Rushford-Peterson School Board

The terms of four current R-P School Board members expire this year. Those members are: Joyce Iverson, Julie Koop (who left the board last summer; Koop’s term is being completed by interim board member Kathy Ingram), Dean Mierau and Jon Pettit. Only two people have filed for open board seats. Iverson has filed for re-election, and Peterson resident Chris Grindland’s name will appear on the ballot. As of late last week, Superintendent Chuck Ehler said Kathy Wade is the only person he knew that was running as a write-in candidate. In addition, incumbent Dean Mierau recently told the TCR that he would serve another term if elected as a write-in. Rushford residents will vote at the Rushford City Hall building from 7 a.m.-8 p.m.

R-P School Referendum

The Rushford-Peterson School Board is asking residents to vote in the upcoming election for an extension of the current operating levy that’s been in place since 2002. In addition, the ballot will include an option to increase the amount of the operating levy in the amount of $100 dollars per student. If approved the operating referendum will help fund day-to-day operations for the district.

Superintendent Chuck Ehler said there will be two questions on this year’s ballot.

“One will be to authorize the renewal of the levy that’s been in place, while the second question will authorize the levy to increase by $100 per district student,” he said. “This has nothing to do with the new building. The levy was put in place shortly after Rushford and Peterson’s schools consolidated and the board recognized they needed help with the day-to-day operations. This is what the school board wants the residents to give the okay to continue.”

City of Rushford Village

Only one CRV council member’s term is up this election cycle. Richard Smith has served out his term and has not filed for re-election, according to Mayor Gordon Johnson. “We’re hoping for a write-in candidate, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Richard (Smith) would serve again if he received the write-in votes. But the council will obviously welcome any write-in that residents elect.” Johnson said the CRV council would have the ability to recruit and appoint a new member if no write-in candidate fills Smith’s spot. Village residents will vote at the CRV Hall from 7 a.m.-8 p.m.