Both Winner City Council seat races end in tiesBoth Winner City Council races ended in deadlocks Tuesday night, meaning the winner may be determined by the flip of the coin or some other game of chance.
By: Tom Lawrence, The Daily Republic
WINNER — Maybe they should change the name of the town to Ties.
Both Winner City Council races ended in deadlocks Tuesday night, meaning the winner may be determined by the flip of the coin or some other game of chance.
Ward 1 incumbent Roger Root and Dave Baker tied at 136 votes apiece after several recounts and in Ward 3, Brad Schramm and Orville Lund tied at 128 votes each.
Winner City Clerk Rhonda Augspurger said it was a stunning result.
“It is unbelievable, yes,” Augspurger said. “I didn’t think I would ever see it happen.”
The city will form two recount boards, with each candidate choosing one member and a third chosen from the election board. They will likely meet Friday, Augspurger said, and check the ballots and the math.
If one or both races are tied, a flip of the coin, drawing of lots or some other game of chance will determine the winner or winners in Winner, she said.
Winner Mayor Jess Keesis said the last time it happened in Winner, a coin flip determined who won the election.
The Winner City Council will meet Monday night to certify the results, Augspurger said.
Tuesday was a good night for Keesis, who was re-elected and saw an ordinance defeated that would have taken power away from the mayor. The issue arose in late 2010 when Keesis suspended Winner's police chief Paul Schueth. By law he could do that without council approval.
Ordinance 808, which would limit the mayor’s hiring and firing abilities, was defeated 561-297.
The mayor appoints the city attorney, assistant city attorney, finance officer, police chief and public works superintendent with council approval. However, he can dismiss any of them without council approval.
Ordinance 808 would have limited the mayor’s authority to only appoint or dismiss the city attorney and assistant city attorney with council approval.
Keesis won a second, two-year term in a three-way race, garnering 490 votes, with Frank Finney receiving 308 votes and Mike Moss 57.
“You know what, this is a great, great statement by the people of Winner, South Dakota,” Keesis said. “I don’t take it as a personal victory; it’s a victory for the town.”
Other area towns’ and school districts’ unofficial results were:
* Alpena city — Trustee: Stephen Passenheim, with 55 votes, and Richard Mees, who garnered 44, were elected. Grant Terkildsen finished third with 27.
* Avon city — Ward 2: Greg Voigt unseated incumbent Jill Grogan, winning 48-31.
* Corsica city — Bond issue: A $1.7 million bond issue to pay for street and drainage construction passed 94-32.
* Delmont city — Ward 3: Elle Rice defeated incumbent Earla Strid 12-11.
* Freeman city — Mayor: Samuel Sorenson defeated incumbent Clifford Tjaden 240-129 in a contest with 39 percent of the 952 registered voters casting ballots; Ward 1: Donna Waltner topped incumbent Royce Breneman 73-62 in a race that saw a 43 percent turnout.
* Geddes city — Ward 1: Raymond Mushitz ousted incumbent Ronald Dufek 21-10.
* Gregory city — Mayor: Councilman Maurice Schahlt was elected with 218 votes. Lyle Martin was second with 129 and Melissa Voskia received 23. Mayor Dan DeSmet chose not to seek re-election. Ward 1: incumbent Chad Peck defeated Wade Juracek 61-60.
* Gregory School District — School board: Two three-year seats: incumbent David Shoemaker, with 362 votes, and Curt Sinclair, with 201, were elected. David Fogel finished third with 164, followed by Micah Stevicks with 109, Rod Vosika with 72 and Ronnie Spain-Messick with 32.
* Lane city — Trustee: incumbent Shirley Hines defeated Clyde Zirpel 18-16.
* Oacoma city — Trustee seats: incumbents Kurt Kelsey and Gary Dominiack retained their seats, receiving 82 and 79 votes, respectively, while challenger James Harmon finished third with 26.
* Plankinton city — Ward 2: John “Joe” Staller was first with 34 votes and recently appointed councilman Brad Kehn received 30 votes. Both will serve on the council, while incumbent M. Joan Williams, who recently resigned but not in time to have her name removed from the ballot, received 3 votes.
* Platte-Geddes School District — School board: Monte Wagner defeated Dan Selvig 216-151 in an election with 16.7 percent turnout. Stacey Erickson and Dr. Regg Hagge were unopposed for three-year terms and Steve Spawn was unopposed for a two-year term.
* Tripp city — Ward 3: Victor Olson unseated incumbent Gerald Schoenfelder, winning by a vote of 46-19.