Local News

Petersburg ballot set

The local ballot is now set in Petersburg and, for the second year in a row, there is no contest for the City Council and there’s one council seat with no candidates. Councilors Nancy Strand and Sue Flint chose to run for another term but Councilor John Jensen did not. That means the Mayor and Council will have to appoint someone to fill that seat after the October election. The appointee will serve at least until the public vote’s on the Petersburg Borough Petition. That’s likely to be sometime this winter.

Meanwhile, there is only one contested seat on this years ballot. Thats for the Harbor Advisory Board. There are two open seats and three candidates. Incumbents Bob Martin and Kurt Wholhueter are running as is Peter Schultz, who would be new to the board.

Barring any successful write-in campaigns, the rest of the seats on this year’s ballot will be uncontested. That includes two seats on the School Board which will be filled by incumbent Sarah Holmgrain and Cheryl File, who will be a new member of that board.

Rocio Tejera and Kris Norosz will serve in two of the three seats available on the hospital board. Incumbents Mary Ellen Anderson, Marilyn Menish-Meucci and Anne Hurt will fill out the three open spots on the Library board. Stan Hjort and Jim Engell will continue their service on the Public Safety Advisory Board, filling out the two available terms. Charles Martinez and Rocky Flint will continue on the Utility Board. They’ll be joined by Tom Stearns which leaves one open seat on that board. Kathi Riemer will join incumbent Angel Worhatch on Parks and Recreation.

All told, there are six seats with no candidates, including the council spot and three of the four open posts on the Planning an Zoning Commission. Incumbent Otis Marsh is the only person running for planning.

Write-in candidates are not allowed to run for Mayor or City Council, but write-ins are allowed to to run for any of the other seats as long as they give the city a letter of intent prior to the election.

The big decisions for local voters this year will be on the ballot propositions.

Proposition one asks whether the city should withdraw from the Interisland Ferry Authority, which abandoned its Petersburg service several years ago for lack of ridership. Proposition two would raise the sales tax exemption rate from 12 hundred to 17 hundred dollars to help the city raise more revenue. The third proposition would approve a financing plan for the city to purchase a 5 acre parcel of waterfront property that could benefit the harbor department and local fishing fleet. The plan includes using a total of 850 thousand dollars out of the city’s General, Economic and Property Development Funds. The city would also take out a loan of up to 550 thousand dollars. That would be paid back through moorage rate and upland storage fee increases for harbor customers as well as rental income from the property.

The local vote is October 2nd.

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