Write-in candidates respond

By Sarah Pridgeon

Municipal seats in both Sundance and Pine Haven were open for write-in votes at the primary election, though not every name put forth has agreed to appear on the ballot in November.

Todd Fritz received the most write-in nominations for both Sundance mayor and Sundance council, with 13 and 15 votes respectively. He has declined both nominations, says County Clerk Linda Fritz.

Due to conflicting statutes, it had mistakenly been thought that a write-in candidate cannot be replaced by the next person down on the list if they decline the nomination. But while statute 22.16.106b does make this stipulation, statute 22.23.307 states that the person with the next highest number of votes can be contacted in the case of a municipal election.

Fritz says she will be asking for legislative change on this issue to ensure that either the two statutes are no longer in conflict or that it is specifically stated that the first statute does not apply to municipal elections.

Brandon Jagow received the next highest number of votes for Sundance mayor, says Fritz, but does not live within city limits. Josh Kammerer is therefore the qualified potential candidate second on the list and, says Clerk-Treasurer Kathy Lenz, has accepted the nomination.

No other qualified candidates received enough write-in votes for the council seats in Sundance.

In Pine Haven, Larry Suchor received the most write-in votes for the mayoral seat but has declined to accept the nomination. Karla Brandeburg, who was second on the list, has also declined.

Of the two candidates who received enough write-ins to appear on the ballot for a council seat in Pine Haven, John Henle has accepted the nomination but Jeanne Williams has not.

Finally, Joe Baron received 164 write-in votes from Republican voters for county attorney but has not accepted and will continue to run as a Democrat.