Voters will elect local school board, city council members Tuesday
Ozark County Clerk Brian Wise's office in the courthouse will be open extended hours from 8 a.m. until noon Saturday, April 3, and from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Tuesday, April 5, to accommodate Gainesville residents and voters in the Dora and Thornfield school districts who want to vote absentee in the Tuesday, April 6, General Municipal Election.
Polls will be open from 6 a.m. until 7 p.m. Tuesday. Gainesville voters will vote in the Ozark County Courthouse. Dora School District voters will vote at the Dora Volunteer Fire Department on Highway 181 just north of H Highway. Thornfield School District voters will vote at the Thornfield General Baptist Church on County Road 916. Ozark County residents who vote in the Ava School District will vote in the Ava Community Center in Ava. In that race, five candidates are running for two seats: Deana L. Parsick, Rory Boeddeker, Chance Dry, Jason Churchill and Carole Floyd.
In Ozark County, elected positions are coming open on all five school district and all three municipal boards, as well as on the Public Water District #1 Board in Theodosia and the Ozark County Ambulance District Board. (No terms are expiring on the Ozark County Health Department, the county’s other public board with elected members). However, state law allows entities to opt out of holding elections when the number of candidates equals the number of terms ending, which is the case for the elected city councils in Bakersfield and Theodosia, the Bakersfield, Gainesville and Lutie school districts and the public boards that oversee Public Water District #1 in Theodosia and the Ozark County Ambu-lance Board.
Entities are generally happy when this happens because they must pay to run their elections, an effort that usually costs several hundred dollars.
Here's an overview of Tuesday's election. Also, see page 5 of this week’s Times for a sample ballot.
Election to three-year terms for board members will be held in the Dora and Thornfield school districts, but not in Bakersfield, Gainesville and Lutie.
In Dora, three candidates are running for two positions: incumbents Terry Martin and Robert Lee, and challenger Gwen Chambers.
In Thornfield, three candidates are running for two positions: incumbents Darrin Clayton and Josh Mayberry, and challenger Travis Tucker.
In Bakersfield, Gaines-ville and Lutie, no election will be held because the number of candidates equals the number of terms expiring on the boards.
In Bakersfield, incumbents Chris Bales and Jonathan Lashley refiled, and no other candidates filed.
In Gainesville, incumbents Mason Eslinger and Jabet Wade refiled, and no other candidates filed.
In Lutie, incumbents Carl Kruger, Ric Englehardt and Shanna Clayton all refiled, and no other candidates filed.
Of the three municipalities in Ozark County, only Gainesville will hold an election. Elected municipal officials here serve two-year terms.
Gainesville’s incumbent East Ward Alderman Dana Crisp refiled, and Debbie Miller also filed for the East Ward seat. Center Ward incumbent Treva Warrick refiled. Shane Ledbetter did not refile for his West Ward seat, and no other candidate filed. Residents of the West Ward may opt to write in a name for that seat on their ballot.
In Bakersfield, incumbent Dianna Stover refiled, but incumbent Erin Bonham did not refile. Jodi Burns, who previously served on the village board but resigned before her term ended, has filed for Bonham’s seat.
In Theodosia, incumbent John Maglione refiled, but longtime council member Bret Cook did not refile. Craig Fisher filed as a candidate for the board. Since the number of candidates equals the number of terms expiring, no election will be held.
Ozark County Ambu-lance District: Incumbent Craig Fox refiled for the District 1 seat, and incumbent Elaine Burnett re-filed for the District 4 seat. No other candidates filed in either district, so no election will be held.
Public Water District #1 in Theodosia: Incumbents Rick Engelhardt and Susanne Meeks re-filed for three-year terms. No other candidates filed, so no election will be held.