Election Season In Rim Country


Spring is barely a week old, but political hopefuls are popping up all over the place.

The Rim Country has had a trickle of state office aspirants make rounds to meetings in recent weeks, and now, nomination petitions for town and county and special district offices are available for local hats aimed at the ring.

The brave souls seeking to steer the previously tempestuous waves of the Pine Strawberry Water Improvement District have declared and filed, and now wait for the special May election. Filing for election to the seven seats: Lawrence H. Bagshaw, Russell Brock, Richard James, Trent McNeeley, Paul Randall, Sam Schwalm, Don Smith and Tom Weeks.

Once the new PSWID board is seated, it will decide which three members must again stand for election in November.

Gila County recently advertised candidate packets available for: Superior Court judge, District 2; clerk of the Superior Court; Justice of the Peace in both Payson and Globe; and Constable, also in both Payson and Globe.

At its March 18 meeting, Town Clerk Lois Johnson told the Star Valley Town Council packets for their election would be available this week. The positions of mayor, held by Ronnie McDaniel, and three council seats, held by Paty Henderson, Vern Leis and Del Newland are up for election.

Those seeking nominations to run for the open seats need at least 19 signatures and no more than 37 to file their petitions. The paperwork to seek election to the council must be returned by Wednesday, May 28.

At that same meeting, the Star Valley council adopted a resolution supporting all mail elections and consolidated election dates. The primary is Tuesday, Aug. 26 and the general election is Tuesday, Nov. 4.

Johnson reminded the council the citizens of Star Valley will need to consider Home Rule. Home Rule allows a municipality to expend more than the limits imposed by voters in 1980, but not more than its revenues.

Candidate packets for the Payson mayor and open council seats were slated to be available last Friday, March 28. In addition to the mayor’s post, the positions held by Councilors Ed Blair, Fred Carpenter and Su Connell will be up for election this year.

The county advertisement said candidate packets for special district board members; school and community college board members will be available later. These positions will be voted on in the November general election.

Gila County School Superintendent Linda O’Dell is still preparing the packets for the school and community college board seats that will be open.

Both Northern Gila County seats on the community college board will be open, they are currently held by Larry Stephenson and the newly appointed John Zilisch.

The Pine School Board will have three seats open. Robert Horn, Dave Prechtel and Michael Wood currently hold those seats. Two Payson posts are open, currently held by Rory Huff and Devin Wala.

Just about every fire, water and sanitary district in Northern Gila County has one to three positions up for election.

Rob Sanders and William Easton currently hold the two positions on the board of the Northern Gila County Sanitary District that will be on the ballot.

Area fire districts with posts to fill are: Beaver Valley (3), Christopher-Kohl’s (2), East Verde Park (2), Gisela Valley (2), Hellsgate (2), Houston-Mesa (2), Pine-Strawberry (2), Pleasant Valley (3), Round Valley/Oxbow Estates (2), Tonto Basin (1), and Whispering Pines (3).


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