Danedri Thompson
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Ballots in races that will determine city council members and school board members are set now that the filing deadline has passed on Jan. 22.
Voters in Gardner, Edgerton and Spring Hill will elect mayors and representatives to their respective city councils and school boards on April 2.
Several races are highly-contested with more than two candidates for each position. For example, in two USD 231 races for school board seats, there are three candidates. Brett Limer, Joel Riggs and Rob Shippy all vie for Position 5 on the school board. Brad Chandler, Patty Fabing and Duane Waldman vie for Position 6. Two candidates, Shelta Collins and Mary Nelson are running for Position 4.
In the Spring Hill School District, two of three board races are contested. Incumbent Eric Boyle faces board member Max Strausbaugh for Position 4; and Sharon Mitchell and Jack Tate vie for Position 5. Jason Winbolt is unopposed for Position 6.
In order to run for each of the positions, candidates have to live within pre-determined districts; however, all candidates will be elected at-large by all patrons of the district.
In the race for Edgerton City Council, the terms of two council members will expire shortly after the April 2 election, but only one person has filed to run in that election – incumbent Heidi Wiseman.
According to Anna-Marie Keena, Administrative Services Director for the city of Edgerton, a write-in candidate with the most votes would be elected to the seat, if they are eligible.
“Even if there’s a full ballot and you have a person with more write-in ballots than someone that’s on the ballot, they would presumably win that election,” Keena said.
If a winning write-in candidate is not eligible, for example they don’t live within city limits, the mayor would appoint and the council would approve a new council member.
Gardner, Edgerton and Spring Hill will all elect new mayors, but only Gardner’s mayoral race is contested. Incumbent Dave Drovetta faces Chris Morrow in that race. In Spring Hill, what once appeared to be a two-person mayoral race is down to one candidate. Council president Steve Ellis is unopposed in the race after Mayor Mark Squire withdrew his candidacy. Mayor Don Roberts is also unopposed in Edgerton.
As is becoming a tradition, the Gardner City Council race is highly-contested with five candidates fighting for two positions. Both incumbents, Kristina Harrison and Randy Gregorcyk, seek a second term. They face Christopher Benjamin, Tory Roberts and Steve Shute.
Spring Hill voters will elect two members to the city council. Candidates include Chad Eckert, incumbent Chris Leaton and Bradley Zerr.
In addition to municipal and school positions, all Johnson County voters will be asked to select four members to the Johnson County Community College Board of Trustees. Candidates include incumbent Jerry Cook, Overland Park; Lee Cross, Overland Park; incumbent Robert K. Drummond, Olathe; incumbent Melody L. Rayl, Olathe; Richard Schroder, Lenexa; and incumbent Stephanie Sharp, Lenexa.
The general election is April 2, but advance voting in-person will begin on March 26 at the county election office in Olathe. The last day to register in order to be eligible to vote in the April 2 election is March 12.