Chesterton Tribune                                                                                   Adv.

Unopposed county candidates ready to claim seats

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As reported yesterday in the Chesterton Tribune, this past Tuesday at noon was the deadline for the Democrat and Republican parties to file candidates to fill vacancies on the November general election ballot.

Both parties added additional candidates at the township level, naming more contestants to Porter, Pleasant, and Union township boards. The Democrats also named Donald J. Guernsey as their challenger to unseat Republican Anthony Pampalone in the Union Twp. Trustee race.

With no additional candidates coming forward for other races, those running unopposed are in position to claim victory in November’s general elections.

Winners by Default?

According to the records with the county Voters Registration Office this morning, several countywide races remain uncontested.

County Council District Races

Democrat Jeremy Rivas is unopposed in the county council 2nd district race. Rivas overwhelmingly defeated incumbent Rita Stevenson in May’s primary elections. The 2nd district is primarily in Portage Township.

Meanwhile Republican incumbent Karen Conover remains unopposed and is on her way to serve another term on the council. The 3rd district is centered in the city of Valparaiso and Center Township.

Voters will however have a choice in the other council races.

In Duneland’s 1st council district, voters will choose to re-elect Democrat Bob Poparad or replace him with former county commissioner James Biggs, the Republican choice.

In the South County 4th council district, council newcomer Democrat Marylyn Johns will face Republican James Polarek to keep her seat. Johns joined the council at the beginning of this year, replacing Mike Bucko who now serves as Porter County treasurer.

Countywide Races

Porter County Prosecuting Attorney Brian Gensel is running unopposed in his race. Gensel also ran unopposed in the May primary election on the Republican ticket.

Superior Court Judge Julia Jent, the Democrat candidate, also has no opponent this year.

Township Races

Several township trustee candidates remain unopposed.

For the Duneland area trustee candidates unopposed are Democrat Suzanna Philbrick for Westchester Twp., Republican Beth Underwood for Liberty Twp., and Democrat Jan Meyers for Jackson Twp.

The Pine Twp. trustee position is being contested by Democrat Andy Himan and Republican Eric L. Camel.

Outside of the Duneland area, Republican Jean Oehlman for Pleasant Twp., Republican Richard Schultz for Morgan Twp., Republican Lynn Ross for Washington Twp., Republican Edward K. Morales, and Republican Russell Franzman for Boone Twp. are all unopposed trustee candidates.

In township board races where voters can elect up to three candidates, three Republicans are running unopposed for the Liberty Twp. board -- Edward W. Seykowski, Jacquelyn Sterling, and H. Glen Wiles.

Republicans are also running with no Democratic opposition in Pine Twp. Those candidates are Tom Lipinski, Daniel Timm, and Margaret “Peggy” Richardson.

The parties are split in Westchester Twp. and Jackson Twp. board races. Three candidates in the running unopposed for Jackson Twp. are Republicans Ronald Bishop, Judith Guernsey, and Democrat Frank O’Reilly.

The Westchester Twp. board candidates are still in competition to become members of the three-seat board. Westchester Democrats William Cantrell and Robin Chubb will vie with Republicans John Canright, Sue Huyser, and Barbara Stroud for those spots in November.

Final Ballot Deadlines

Voters Registration Republican Director Sundae Kubacki said filing is complete for the county races but the final ballots cannot be decided until the major state parties finish filing their candidates voted in at state party conventions. The deadline for that is Thursday, July 15.

No independents or minor party candidates filed a petition with the voters registration office for a county seat position by the June 30 deadline, Kubacki said.

Kubacki also mentioned candidates have until July 15 at noon to voluntarily withdraw from the ballot.


Posted 7/9/2010




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