Write-in candidates challenge mayor and council seats Election is next Tuesday, April 1st

GLENWOOD CITY — At the last minute a race has developed for mayor and city council with the entrance of write-in candidates for both mayor and city council.

This newspaper has accepted an advertisement from Julian Bender and Chris Schone who will be seeking write-in votes.

Bender will ask voters to write-in his name for mayor and Chris Schone for a council seat. Bender will oppose incumbent mayor John Larson and with Chris Schone in the running for a council seat, that will make it a four-person race for the three open seats on the City Council.

David Graese, Scott Schone, and Nancy Hover currently hold those three seats. Hover and Graese filed nomination papers for re-election along with Ken Peterson, and those three names are on the ballot for next Tuesday’s election. Scott Schone did not file for re-election.

Other members of the City Council are Crystal Booth, Terry Klinger and Ben DeGross. Terms of those three expire in April of 2015.

Larson defeated Peterson for mayor in the special recall election last December by a vote of 183 to 140 and Graese survived the recall election by two votes over Chris Schone and Hover survived by three votes over Barb Standaert.

The big issue in this election is about the proposed Vista Sand Mine and the annexation of that property into the city. Candidates Schone and Bender have voiced opposition to the mine at Council meetings. Chris Schone appearing before the council voiced opposition as far back as a year ago.

A news release prepared by Bender and Schone dated last Friday states, “Bender and Schone are not ‘anti-mine’, but that they are opposed to this mine, at this time. Both believe that Glenwood City can provide other opportunities for local economic development.” But they do not indicated what those opportunities might be.

They also state that “over the past few months, it has become clear that Mayor and Council are pushing to sign a mining and annexation agreement with Vista Sand that may not protect the interest of our community, or those of our neighbors in Downing,” Bender said.

Chris Schone stated in that news release, “there were big promises of up to $250,000 in annual payments to the City. Now we are told the reality is that total tax and royalty payments may be only $90,000 to $115,000. Instead of 70 jobs, there may be 40.”

Schone also questioned the council’s decision to allow 24/7 operation after the “Citizen’s Advisory Committee had recommended limiting mining to 10 hours, five days a week.” Schone continued, “Instead of over 70 jobs, there may be 40. Air quality issue for our schools are not being adequately assured, and we have parents who are clearly stating that they plan to transfer their kids to other districts.”

Mayor John Larson provided the following statement to this newspaper:

“All development brings with it some challenges. The proposed frac sand mine in Glenwood City will be no different. But, with proper oversight it can be done responsibility and will most certainly boost the local economy. The mine will provide 40-60 jobs paying a  ‘living wage.’ The community of Blair was promised 40 jobs when its mine came to town. That mine now provides 90 jobs! Annexing the mine property into the city will generate between $100,000 and $200,000 in additional revenues each year.”

Larson continued, “Quite frankly, we are talking about the economic survival of our city. Maintaining a balanced budget will become more and more difficult. The only recourse will be to make even further cuts in programs, possibly eliminating some. Less police protection, less snow plowing, less road maintenance, less for the library, less fire and ambulance protection.” Larson concluded, “The sand mine is an incredible opportunity.”

3 Running For Glenwood School Board

Three people are seeking a seat on the Glenwood City School Board for one of the two open seats. The three are Jon Mrdutt, Kevin Bonte and Lisa B. Kaiser. Bonte and Mrdutt are the incumbents while Kaiser was a previous member of the board.

Other people on the seven member board include; Charles Rasmussen, John Logghe, Lori Klinger, Judy Achterhof and Charlotte Obermueller.

No Contests Noted in Boyceville Elections

Neither the Village of Boyceville nor the school board election next Tuesday has a contest.

For the Village Board incumbents Herb Dow and Jonathan Farrell along with Jo A. Palmer are seeking the two-year term on the board. Incumbent Brian Wulff did not run for another term.

There is only one seat up for election on the Boyceville School Board, and Steven Bird currently holds that, and he is the only one to file for the election.

Dunn County Judge

Three candidates filed nomination papers for Dunn County Circuit Court Judge following the retirement of Bill Stewart last November.

Dunn County District Attorney James Peterson, along with Christina Mayer, an attorney with Schofield, Higley and Mayer in Menomonie, and Roger Hillestad, an attorney in Durand had filed nomination papers. Peterson and Mayer received the most votes in the February 18 primary and are both on next Tuesday’s ballot.

Knapp Election

Four people are seeking the three seats on the village board. Those running are Matt Friest, David G. Thibado, Georgene Close and Ramona Sobottka. Closer and Thibado are incumbents

Current board member Curt Matula did not seek re-election to the board.

No Contest Noted in Downing, Wheeler or Wilson

For Village Trustees in the Village of Downing and the Village of Wheeler only one person is seeking the open seat on the village board.

In Downing, incumbent Gordon Otterson did not run again for his seat and Chad Lee was nominated at Caucus.

In the Village of Wheeler Linda J. Crosby is seeking another term on the village board.

In the Village of Wilson, Joanne Showalter is running unopposed for the village board.

There is no Township elections this year.

St. Croix County sample ballots and voter information will appear in a special supplement carried with the Tribune Press Reporter that is mailed to St. Croix County residents. For Dunn County voters, their notices appear within the pages of this edition.