Voters head to the polls to decide county, city races

Wessington Springs approves, Pickstown rejects ballot questions


County and city voters throughout the region descended on the polls Tuesday night to decide on candidates for a number of different county-level positions as well as a pair of municipal ballot questions.

Following are the most recently available results from those races.


In Aurora County, voters selected Republican Roger Hanten of White Lake over Democrat Paul Munsen of White Lake by a count of 153-144, or 52%-48%, for the District 2 seat on the Aurora County Commission.

The commission seat is a two-year term.


Bon Homme

In the race for the District 2 seat on the Bon Homme County Commission, Republican Edward Van Gerpen, of Avon, defeated Democrat Bruce A. Voight, of Avon, by a vote of 336-285, or 54%-46%.

The race for the District 4 seat on the commission was won by Republican Jason D. Kokes, of Tabor, over Democrat Terry Sestak, of Tabor, by a vote of 403-173, or 70%-30%

The seats are four-year terms.


Buffalo County voters chose Democrat Janet L. Von Eye, of Miller, for the county treasurer position by a vote of 412-138 over Independent Doreen C. Bagola, of Fort Thompson. Von Eye received 75% of the vote to 25% for Bagola.

Voters also selected Dawn C. Cable, Democrat, over Marlin Dean Ross, Independent, by a vote of 109-45 for the District 2 county commission seat. Cable took 71% of the vote to 29% for Ross. Both candidates hail from Pukwana.

The position is a four-year term.



Gregory County voters selected Republican Lance Matucha, of Burke, for the District 2 county commission seat. Matucha received 278 votes for 51% of the vote, coming in ahead of Democrat Kelsea Kenzy Sutton, of Burke, who tallied 223 votes for 41% of the vote. Independent candidate Nichole Matucha, of Burke, received 45 votes for 8%.

The term for the position runs four years.


Jones County voters selected Independent Kirby Krogman of White River over Independent Diana Boni of Okaton for the position of states attorney by a vote of 391-178, or 69%-31%

The position is a four-year term.


In a three-way race for two at-large seats on the Lyman County Commission, voters chose Republican incumbent Leslie Reuer, of Reliance, and Republican Brian Kraus, of Reliance, over Independent Kevin Thomas. Reuer received 847 votes for 37% of the vote and Kraus received 806 votes for 35% of the vote, securing their positions on the commission.


Thomas, of Kennebec, received 624 votes, or 27% of the vote.

The seats are four-year terms.


Tripp County voters selected Republican Daniel Forgey, of Dallas, for the District 2 seat on the county commission by a vote of 353-226 over Independent Marla Liggett, of Colome. Forgey took 61% of the vote to 39% for Liggett.

The seat is a four-year term.


Democrat Paul Larson, of Woonsocket, defeated Republican Craig A. Brueske, of Huron, for the District 2 seat on the Sanborn County Commission by a vote of close vote of 132-130, or 50%-50%.

In the race for the District 4 seat on the Sanborn County Commission, voters chose Republican Steve Larson, of Letcher, over Independent Ray Westerndorf, of Woonsocket, by a vote of 150-107, or 58%-42%


Both seats are four-year terms.

Wessington Springs

Voters in Wessington Springs approved a resolution that establishes a special maintenance fee for the purpose of maintaining or repairing public improvements.

The resolution passed by a vote of 201-136, meaning the resolution will go into effect.

The city of Wessington Springs first passed a special maintenance in 2015. The city must pass its resolution annually. In 2019 the resolution was referred to a vote and failed to receive a majority of the votes and failed.

The approved resolution assesses a special maintenance fee of $0.74 per foot based on the front footage of the parcel. On a corner lot the fee is only assessed on one side. The resolution provides that no parcel would be assessed more than $250. The city has budgeted $52,000 to be raised by the fee in the 2021 budget to be used for street maintenance.


Pickstown voters rejected a proposed city ordinance that would have amended the maximum height, sidewall height and square footage of unattached garages or sheds within the town. The proposed ordinance would set the maximum height of such structures at 20 feet and the sidewalls at 14 feet.


The ordinance also would have stated that the total size of an unattached garage or shed shall not exceed 10% of the lot area with a maximum size of 1,800 square feet.

Voters cast 67 votes against the ordinance and 47 votes in favor.

Erik Kaufman joined the Mitchell Republic in July of 2019 as an education and features reporter. He grew up in Freeman, S.D., graduating from Freeman High School. He graduated from the University of South Dakota in 1999 with a major in English and a minor in computer science. He can be reached at
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