Voter turnout low for primary as two challengers lead vote-getting
The Tonganoxie City Council will have at least one new member, thanks to Aug. 1 primary results.
Voters selected up to three candidates, as terms for incumbents Chris Donnelly, Andy Gilner and Jim Truesdell are set to expire. The top six candidates out of the 10-candidate field advance to the November general election. Gilner and Donnelly both made the top six, while Truesdell finished seventh in the vote-getting.
Challenger Jamie Lawson had the most votes with 209, while fellow challenger Loralee Stevens had 138 votes. Donnelly placed third with 120 votes, AW Rocky Himpel fourth with 115 and Gilner fifth with 99. Ryan Keltner nabbed the final general election spot with 90 votes.
Truesdell garnered 45 votes, Jennifer Kohl 34 and Michael Towle 19.
Rachell I. Rowand, who recently announced she was dropping out of the race, received six votes.
Voter turnout was dismal for last week’s primary.
County Clerk Janet Klasinski said Tonganoxie turnout was 11.42 percent.
Tonganoxie North, VFW, had 199 voters and Tonganoxie South, Sacred Heart Church, had 144 voters.
In November, voters again will vote for three candidates. The top three will be the new council members.
Voters also will decide on three Tonganoxie USD 464 races, two of which will be contested, in the November general election. James N. Bothwell and Stacy Willis are running for Position 4, while incumbent Phillip Welsh, Karen K. Wake Bottary and Rowand will vie for Position 5. Chris Gratton is the lone person to file for Position 6.
Board vice president Dan Hopkins is not seeking re-election for Position 4, nor is Kris Grinter in Position 6. Welsh is seeking his first full term, as the board appointed him to Kay Smith’s unexpired term last year.
Elsewhere in southern Leavenworth County, Basehor Mayor David Breuer is running unopposed for another term. Basehor City Council also has two candidates running unopposed for two positions. Current Council Member Jennifer Bizzell, a former Basehor Planning Commission member, was appointed to an unexpired city council term earlier this year. She is running unopposed for her first full term, while newcomer Ty A. Garver also is running unopposed.
In Basehor-Linwood USD 458 board races, incumbent Shelley Stevens of Basehor is running unopposed for Position 4. She’s seeking a second term.
For Position 5, incumbent Richard J. Zamora Jr. of Basehor is running against challenger Tim Hill, who has a Tonganoxie address. In the Position 6 race, incumbent Spencer A. Fritz of Linwood is running against challenger Mike Stieben, who has a Bonner Springs residence.
And in Linwood, only one person is running. Mayor Brian Christenson is running for another term in that office unopposed. There also are three city council seats that are vacant, though no one filed in those races. Linwood has a council of five members.
Polls again will be open 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Nov. 7 for the general election. Voters in the Tonganoxie North precinct will be at the VFW Post Home, 901 E. First St. Tonganoxie South precinct voters will cast ballots at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 1100 West St.
November winners will be sworn in and take office in January their first regular meetings of that month.