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Home arrow News arrow Local News arrow WRITE-INS WILL FILL AREA COUNCIL SEATS



By T.L. Petersen

Observer Staff Writer

It appears the City of Imbler will have a mayor selected by voters, and city councils in Imbler, Summerville, Cove and North Powder will have full city councils.

This will occur if everyone who was voted for in the Nov. 5 election agrees to serve. City recorders in the affected communities also must determine that those who received write-in votes are actual residents of the communities.

By Tuesday afternoon, the Union County Clerk's Office had determined that Imbler residents had cast 30 votes for Joe Combe to be mayor, and 23 votes were written in for former mayor Marcia O'Dell. Several other Imbler residents got three votes each, but the race appears to be between O'Dell and Combe.

"It's very unofficial," said Union County Clerk Nellie Bogue Hibbert as her office finishes counting the write-in votes from the election.

Bogue Hibbert explained that her office has to wait at least eight days after the election so that Union County ballots dropped off in other counties can be returned to the clerk's office in La Grande and counted.

And then, by Nov. 25, Bogue Hibbert must provide a list to each city clerk or recorder of who received write-in votes. At that point, city charters take over to determine who will get the vacant positions.

"They'll want to have full councils by the first of the year," Bogue-Hibbert added, but it could take until then to get the election finally resolved.

"The way they choose from the write-ins is set by the city charter, and that's different in each city."

To fill city council position number five in Imbler, Julie Corson received 17 votes and John Dewey three. For position three, Debra Sturtevant received 16 votes, while other people received four or fewer votes.

In Cove, where voters were asked to select three people for the city council and only one candidate, James Lundy, filed, the next highest vote getters were Wade Johnson with 16, Dennis Myhrum with 14 votes and Matt McCowan with 11 votes.

North Powder voters will have to wait for decisions at the council level, as a few people got two votes apiece, while at least three others got a vote apiece.

In Summerville, two positions on the council are open where no candidates filed.

For position two, Lyle Mann received 12 votes and Lindsey Pierce received six. For position one, Lyle Mann received four votes, Sheri Rogers three, and Ellis Mickey, Susie Ochoa and Loma Wagner received two votes each.

"It's a lot easier when candidates file for an election," Bogue Hibbert.


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