By Lee Revis
Editor, Valdez Star 

Over 800 voters turn out for elections

An even 100 questioned and absentee ballots were cast


Valdez Star photo

Joe Prax, center, and Alan Sorum, right, were sworn into office last Thursday as new school board members by Holly Powers, left, deputy city clerk of Valdez. The two were on hand for a special school board meeting, the first after last week’s municipal elections.

A total of 836 votes were cast in the October 1 municipal elections according Holly Powers, deputy city clerk for Valdez.

Powers made the announcement at noon a week ago Tuesday when the Valdez City Council met at a special meeting to certify the municipal election results.

Voters reelected Mike Wells (454 votes) to the Valdez City Council, along with newcomers Dennis Fleming (351 votes) and Ruth E Knight (360 votes) out of a field of 13 candidates. Former council woman Karen Ables lost her bid for reelection with 225 votes.

Former council members Joe Prax (485 votes) and Alan Sorum (336 votes) were both elected to the board of education, out of a field of five candidates, ousting incumbent Steve Brockman.

Both were sworn in during a special school board meeting held Thursday night at the Valdez High School library.

Candidate Nate Smith, came in fourth place, earning 280 votes. Candidate Rich Long, who announced last week that he was dropping out of the race, still netted 102 votes, as his name was still on the ballot because candidates cannot withdraw from the race after the nomination period for elected office is closed.

The three council seats are for two-year terms.

On the school board side, candidates Joe Prax and Alan Sorum won the race to fill two seats that are for three-year terms. Prax received 485 votes and Sorum 336 votes. Their new school board seats are for three year terms.

Hopefuls Jessica Vincent and Billy “BJ” Williams recorded 293 and 187 votes respectively.

One absentee ballot and two questioned ballots were not counted out of the 100 cast. One absentee ballot was “over-voted,” meaning the elector filled in the bubble next to the name of three candidates for school board, when there were only two seats up for election. Two questioned ballots were not counted after Holly Powers, deputy city clerk, discovered that the voters in question were indeed registered to vote in Valdez, but had failed to register a full 30 days before Tuesday’s election, as required by law.

Valdez Star photo

Ruth E Knight, right, was sworn into office Monday night after winning a seat on the Valdez City Council. Sheri Pierce, city clerk, administered the oath of office. Incumbent Mike Wells and councilman-elect Dennis Fleming were absent and will be sworn into office during the Oct. 21 council meeting.


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