Recount to begin soon in District 19 House primary

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After being decided by 21 votes earlier this month, a recount in the South Dakota House of Representatives District 19 Republican primary is scheduled to take place next week.

The three-person race, which was won by current Rep. Kent Peterson and challenger Jessica Bahmuller has been challenged by Rep. Marty Overweg, who came up short in the June 2 primary in District 19, which includes Douglas, Hanson, Hutchinson, McCook and part of Bon Homme counties. Peterson received 1,881 votes, Bahmuller received 1,741 votes and Overweg received 1,720 votes.

The South Dakota Secretary of State's Office said Wednesday the recount won't start prior to Monday, June 22 when county officials in those five counties will count the ballots again. Recounts margins for elections involving two state legislative seats are calculated by the total vote cast for all candidates two times the average number of votes cast for candidates nominated or elected.

According to the state's recount formula, the vote margin for the District 19 race had to be within 72 votes between Bahmuller and Overweg. Petitions had to be filed with each county auditor in the district after the state canvassed the election votes, and recounts have to be complete within 14 days of the petition being filed.

Burke voters approve opt-out measure

BURKE — Voters in Burke renewed the school district's property tax opt-out but at a lower rate for the next five years.


The opt-out passed by a 212-83 margin, with 71.8 percent of voters supporting the measure on Tuesday. Burke has had an opt-out since 2005, most recently at $300,000 per year, and the Burke School Board decided earlier this year to proceed with a $250,000 opt-out level for the next five years.

School leaders and school board members advocated prior to the election that opt-out funds allow the school district to provide career and technical education programs. Some of those have included Project Lead the Way courses, agriculture programming and Advanced Placement classes, beyond what they say would otherwise be the basic-level curriculum.

Other area election results on Tuesday included:

  • Avon City Council: Voters selected Kevin Tjeerdsma and Matthew Petrik to serve as city aldermen, according to the city website. Tjeerdsma, a former Avon mayor, received 45 votes and defeated Bridgette Muller with 24 votes for a two-year Ward 1 term. Petrik won a three-year term in Ward 2 with 44 votes over Bradley Voigt (13 votes) and Vickie Paiz (12 votes).

  • Avon School Board: Joe Sees and Brandon Baade were elected to three-year terms on the school board Tuesday. Sees received 169 votes, while Baade received 112. Defeated candidates Bridgette Muller had 95 votes and Travis Tjeerdsma received 80 votes. Voter turnout was recorded at 31 percent. (Muller was allowed to be a candidate for both city and school races but would only have been allowed to serve in one seat at a time.)

  • Corsica-Stickney School Board: Voters in the district returned Shannon Tolsma and Jennifer Van Gorp to the school board for three-year terms. Tolsma received 366 votes, while Jennifer Van Gorp received 358 votes. Defeated candidates included Matt Woerner with 222 votes and Robyn Denning with 185 votes. The race had 40 percent voter turnout.

  • Delmont Town Board: Lynette Ellingson claimed the three-year term in a crowded, five-person race with 21 votes, edging Ken Rosewall by one vote. Rosewall had 20, with Earla Strid recording eight votes, Crystal Travis with seven and Teresa Richardson with five.

  • Howard City Council: Eric Rentschler was voted onto the council for a two-year term in Ward 3, receiving 38 votes and defeating incumbent Gerald Adler, who received 16 votes. Voter turnout was 28 percent.

  • Scotland City Council: Challenger Jerry Nelson claimed a two-year term in Ward 2 with 44 votes, defeating incumbent Victor Settje, who had 31 votes. The race had 47 percent voter turnout.

  • Scotland School Board: Damon Mogck, Ryan Robb and Lee Sayler were selected by voters for three-year terms on Tuesday. Mogck received 194 votes, Robb received 182 and Sayler received 163 votes to win election to the board. Andrew Rokusek was defeated with 155 votes. Mogck and Rokusek were incumbents in the race, which had 20 percent voter turnout.

Traxler is the assistant editor and sports editor for the Mitchell Republic. He's worked for the newspaper since 2014 and has covered a wide variety of topics. He can be reached at
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