‘Everything ready’ for election
Voters in Tuesday’s General Election have nearly a full slate of choices, with all but three county-wide races having opposition.
Incumbent Democrats Superior Court Judge Roger D. Davis and Treasurer Lorena A. (Rena) Stepro, and Harrison County Deputy Prosecutor Dennis Byrd, who’s seeking the top prosecutor’s job, have only to show up at the polls and vote for themselves. None of the three have opposition.
Clear sailing is also expected election night, with all voting machines and counters in working order for Harrison County’s 35 precincts.
“Everything’s ready to go,” said Harrison County Election Commission Chair Carole Gaither.
“Every machine has been tested; we’re not expecting any problems.”
And if the weather’s clear, she expects a turnout similar to the Spring Primary, when only 37 percent of Harrison County’s electorate went to the polls. The county has 24,494 “active” voters and another 2,294 voters who haven’t cast a ballot in the last six to eight years, Gaither said.
Absentee voting was “picking up” last week, she said.
Voters will select a winner in the following local races, as listed on the ballot:
Sheriff – Democrat Mike Deatrick and Republican C. Wendell Smith.
Commissioner, District 3 – Democrat Terry L. Miller and Republican Jim A. Heitkemper;
Council, District 1 (Blue River, Spencer and Morgan township residents vote in this district) – Democrat Alvin M. Brown and Republican Lori A. Davis;
Council, District 2 (Jackson and Franklin township residents choose) – Democrat William T. (Bill) Nichols and Republican Gary Davis;
Council, District 3 (Harrison Township residents vote) – Democrat Jesse W. Mathes and Republican Kenneth R. Saulman; and
Council, District 4 (Washington, Heth, Boone, Webster, Posey and Taylor townships) – Democrat Ray (Radar) Lillpop and Republican Ralph E. Sherman.
Voters countywide will elect either Democrat Pat Wolfe or Republican Kathy Jo Arnold Eckart to be the next auditor. And in the assessor’s race, the candidates are Democrat Ronald W. Redus and Republican Paul E. Saulman.
Few voters will see opposition among candidates for trustee/assessor in Harrison County’s 12 townships. All but two have no opposition.
In Blue River, the choice is between Democrat Michael Beyerle and Republican Debbie Kepley Weathers; in Posey Township, Democrat Debbie Karcher and Republican Edgar R. Poe both want the job.
In Harrison Township, the only township with a population high enough to warrant its own assessor, Democrat Gerald Saulman and Republican Kenneth (Ken) Kitterman both want the assessor’s job.
The three-member township trustee advisory boards will also be elected, and in most cases only three candidates are running. Heth Township has three Democrats and one Republican vying for the board. They are Democrats Betty Jenkins, Wilbur (Bud) Neely and Dennis D. (Denny) Phillips and Republican Gerald Jacobs. The boards in townships with less than three candidates will likely appoint a third member after taking office on Jan. 1.
Only one federal race is on the ballot. Incumbent Democrat Baron P. Hill faces a challenge from Republican Mike Sodrel, Libertarian Al Cox and Green Party candidate Jeff Melton.
State legislative representatives are also up for election. The Senate race features Democratic Sen. Richard Young challenged by Republican newcomer Christopher Byrd.
The House race features Democrat Rep. Paul Robertson and Republican Tom Powers. In the far northwest corner of Harrison County, Democrat Rep. Dennie Oxley has no opposition in his bid for re-election.
There are no constitutional questions on the ballot, but there are three judicial retention (yes or no) questions. Those questions ask whether the following should be retained in office: Indiana Supreme Court Justice Robert D. Rucker and appellate court judges Paul D. Mathias and Nancy H. Vaidik.
Four Indianapolis Statehouse offices are up for election: Secretary of State, Auditor of State, Treasurer, and Clerk of the Supreme Court.
Democrat John Fernandez, Republican Todd Rokita and Libertarian Rebecca Sink-Burris are running for Secretary of State; Democrat Barbara Huston, Republican Connie K. Nass and Libertarian Bruce A. Parisi are on the ballot for Auditor of State; candidates for Treasurer of State include Democrat Day Smith, Republican Tim Berry and Libertarian Sam Goldstein; the race for Clerk of the Supreme Court includes Jon Bon, Democrat; Brian Bishop, Republican; and Lisa L. Tennies, Libertarian.
Voters who live in the South Harrison school district will also elect four board members. The slate includes: District 1 (elect one) – Alice C. Timberlake and Nancy D. (Diane) Shewmaker; District 2 (elect two) – Thomas D. Goller, Karen S. Lopp, Michael A. McGraw and Roger Windell; District 5 (elect one) – Crystal S. (Susie) Rainbolt and Carl E. Uesseler.
Polls will open at 6 a.m. and close at 6 p.m. Voters in line when the polls close will be allowed to cast their ballots, Gaither said.