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Tripp-Delmont representation plan up for vote again

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The Daily Republic
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Mitchell South Dakota 120 South Lawler 57301

TRIPP -- A few of the area's school districts will hold elections Tuesday for school board seats and in one district, to potentially reorganize where those seats come from.

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In the Tripp-Delmont School District, voters will go to the polls to vote on whether to decide the district should continue to have school board representation areas or if school board members should be selected at-large, meaning the district could have school board members from anywhere in the district.

Currently, the school district has five members on the board, with two of them coming from Tripp, one of them coming from Delmont and two seats coming from rural parts of the district. Those boundaries are reorganized every 10 years to reflect changes in population from the U.S. Census.

Rhonda Nuss, a school board member from rural Tripp, represents one of the two rural areas in the district. She said it can be hard to find members willing to serve on the school board, especially when people are constrained to district boundaries.

"Some people don't want to run if it's going to be against someone who is already doing a good job," she said. "I think this is a way to open things up and encourage more people to run."

The district has held meetings in both Tripp and Delmont regarding the matter. Nuss said opposition has been light and she's hopeful that people will turnout to vote on the matter.

This isn't the first time voters have taken up the issue. In 2010, the measure to get rid of boundaries was defeated by five votes, 225-220, and that result stood after a recount.

The district spans 251 square miles and is located in four counties -- Bon Homme, Charles Mix, Douglas, Hutchinson -- and includes two Hutterite colonies.

Voters living in Charles Mix and Douglas counties will vote at the Delmont Community Center, while Bon Homme and Hutchinson voters can cast ballots at the Tripp Legion Hall. Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

There is no school board election for Tripp-Delmont. Nuss was the only candidate up for re-election and she was unopposed.

Other area school board elections

Burke: Five candidates are facing off for two, three-year seats on the school board. Incumbents Brandon York and Travis Serr are joined on the ballot by Tamra Glover, Jon Smikle and Tammi Serr. The election will be held at the Burke High School.

Lyman: Voters can choose from four individuals to fill three, three-year at-large terms on the school board. Dennis Stanley is challenging current board members Ronda Schelske, Robert Fanning and Kimm Schweitzer. District polling places include the Reliance Elementary School, Golden Buffalo Convention Center at Lower Brule, the middle school media center in Kennebec, the high school media center in Presho and the fire hall in Vivian.

Wagner: Three candidates are in pursuit of a three-year term on the school board. Incumbent Scott Alderink is being challenged by George Langdeaux and Kelli Huapapi. The election will be held at the Wagner Armory.

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