November 9, 2018 at 2:48 p.m.

Voters turnout in record numbers

Voters turnout in record numbers
Voters turnout in record numbers

If the voters in Chisago County had decided the office-holders for the whole state in this week’s general election-- Amy Klobuchar would not be going back to Washington D.C., Doug Wardlow would be stepping into the Attorney General’s office, Jeff Johnson would be our next Governor... it’s clear the electorate here was pretty much backing the opposite of what the majority in the state supported.
 
It was all Republicans on the winning side in Chisago County balloting. Except of course, for the non-partisan races of sheriff and county board.

Based on the county’s released, unofficial results that have yet to be certified;  Chisago County retains the leadership of Sheriff Brandon Thyen, who received 14,917 votes to Ron Rollins’ 8,570.

There was one race for a County Board seat, which was won by Chris DuBose.  He received 2,142 to Jill Behnke’s 1,910.  Both are new to county government. The incumbent, County Commissioner Lora Walker, announced in the spring she would not seek re-election.  The seat covers the south half of North Branch, Lent and eastward. (See map on jump page.)  

The other expiring term was Ben Montzka’s who ran unopposed, for the city of Wyoming-city of Stacy area.

County Auditor Dennis Freed was not being challenged for re-election, he garnered 18,644 votes. (There were 34,099 registered voters as of polls opening.)
Janet Reiter, County Attorney, was also running unopposed. She got 18,266 votes.

GOP MN Legislative incumbents Representatives Brian Johnson, Cambridge, Anne Neu, North Branch and Bob Dettmer, for 39A in the southeast corner of the county, won re-election to their two year terms.  

Johnson was challenged by a Rush City addiction counselor, Renae Berg. She got 1,854 to Rep. Johnson’s 3,177 votes.

Rep. Neu, who won a special election when former GOP Representative Bob Barrett had to step down, came out ahead of her opponent Jeff Peterson, by 11,031 votes to 7,971 votes.

In local races:
Lindstrom’s new mayor is former chief of police and current council member Kevin Stenson.  Mayor Keith Carlson retired from politics this election.  
Stenson got 1,315 votes.  David Waldoch, also currently on the city council, ran for the open mayor seat and got 748 votes.  One of the council seats was held by incumbent AnnMarie Brink who was returned (1,232 votes) and there’s just one vote seperating the candidates for the other expiring seat.  Bill Schlumbohm sr, got 728 and Katie Roche 727.  

Due to a late announcement of retiring, Curt Flug’s council seat was not on the ballot and was filled temporarily by appointment of Sig Stene, who did not enter the election, so there’s actually three seats in flux.  The fourth candidate, Laurie Burington, got 662 votes.

Chisago City holds onto Bob Gustafson as mayor. Travis Petschl opposed him and got 656 votes to Gustafson’s 1,581.  For council it is Mark Anderson with 1,508 and Craig Meyer 1,246.

There’s a new mayor in Shafer, as the incumbent did not file and Paula Hanson got 190 votes.  The other mayoral candidate Tony Schroepfer got 159 votes.

Two Shafer Council candidates are coming on,  in order:  Nick Brehm (216) and Patty Mattson (179), Diane Chiemelewski (163), Tamara Hessler (103).

North Branch gets a new mayor too, Jim Swenson.

He got 2,181 votes to Robert Canada’s 1,660.  Swenson and Canada were city council members.

Two seats on the North Branch Council were expiring and Kathy Blomquist (incumbent) and Brian Voss take those, Blomquist got 1,652 votes and Voss ,1,803.  In order the rest of the field: Peter Schaps, 1,220, Rob Kloer 1,123 and 61 write-ins.

Sales Tax voted down
The big news from polling in North Branch was the defeat of the sales tax referendum question. The city was asking voters to allow North Branch to impose a half-percent local option sales tax. The proceeds were dedicated to roads and Williams Park improvements.  Voters failed to support that on a vote of 2,493 to 1,401.

North Branch School Board election results were: Kirby Ekstrom, longtime member and current chair, 3,281 and incumbent Sarah Grovender 3,627, Kevin Bollman 2,662, Chris Kester  2,555.  Three were seated.  A special empty seat was declared on the North Branch School Board and Heather Osagiede got 3,038 votes with Robert Benson at 2,517.

In Chisago Lakes School Board voting, incumbents Dani Strenke (4,039)and Mark Leigh (3,585) were retruned, aong with newcomer Melissa Donovan(4,114)   

Incumbent Tom Lawlor (3,067) did not win re-election. Candidate Adam Wojcik got 3,127 votes.

Stacy retains Mayor Mark Utecht. He got 208 votes. He was challenged by Paul Authier (161) and Denise LaVasseur (185).  On the council side with two seats on the ballot, Tony Olivolo (301) returns-- Rebecca Lamotte got 391 votes.

Elsewhere there were no challenges to mayors in Taylors Falls, Harris, Center City, Wyoming and Rush City.

Wyoming filled two seats: Calire Luger was returned (2,121) and Dennis Schilling got 1,599. Incumbent Don Waller  got 1,199 and Kevin Teel 708 votes.

In Harris there were two council seats expiring, Dan Sculley got 251 votes, John Rossini got 222. David Maack got 182. Mayor Diane Miller was unopposed.

Township Supervisors
There are two townships with general election ballots this year...Nessel seated Branden Mell and John Paiti.  

Lent Township voters were seating three of their five supervisors.  They went for Lisa Sinna over David Chelberg, with 652 votes to 611 for Seat C.

Brian Seekon was not challenged for his seat. The other Supervisor seat went to Troy Nelson.

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