IRON COUNTY—Two years ago, voters voted in Wayne Wales as District 1 county commissioner. Wales defeated incumbent George Brunswick by 18 votes in the Democratic primary.
On Feb. 28, Wales easily survived a recall effort, with 62% of District 1 voting against an effort to remove him from office.
But on Aug. 7, District 1 voters turned against Wales’ bid for a new two-year term and went in favor of former commissioner Patti Peretto. The challenger edged Wales by 17 votes—311 to 294.
In other election headlines:
--Melanie Camps defeated Punner Franzene for the county treasurer’s job. She will succeed Marcia Cornelia next January.
--Jim Brennan defeated Roger Zanon for the open District 2 seat on the County Board.
--Sheriff Mark Valesano and District 5 County Commissioner Beverly Camp easily turned back challengers.
--Both ballot proposals—Iron County’s millage allocation and the Forest Park’s bonding for school improvements—were approved.
Peretto will replace Wales on the County Board next January, and Jim Brennan will take the District 2 seat now held by Fran Wills. He received 294 votes (58 percent) to Zanon’s 209.
In District 5, incumbent Commissioner Beverly Camp got overwhelming support—444 votes (89 percent) to 53 for John Faccin.
The other commissioners ran unopposed—Rosalie A. King in District 3 (198 votes) and Carl L. Lind in District 4 (401 votes). All are Democrats—no Republicans filed for County Board seats.
Camps will be the county’s new treasurer after getting 1,370 votes (54 percent) to Franzene’s 1,162. Also taking office will be Joetta M. Greig, who was unopposed in a run for register of deeds and got 2,036 votes. She succeeds Mark Selmo.
Sheriff Mark Valesano turned back Donald W. Nordstrom, getting 1,871 votes (71 percent) to Nordstrom’s 749. Running unopposed were Melissa A. Powell as prosecutor (2,045 votes), Joan Luhtanen as clerk (2,114), Tom Karvala as mine inspector (1,967) Tom Clark as drain commissioner (1,953) and Dan Germic and Christopher Sholander to two seats on the Road Commission (1,081 and 1,767, respectively).
Sholander replaces his father, Carl Sholander, on the Road Board. All are running as Democrats—no Republicans filed.
The county’s millage allocation was approved for two years, 1,455 to 1,116 (56.6 percent in favor). It is for two years, 2013 and 2014.
Forest Park’s bonding request for $995,000 was approved 591 to 537 (52.4 percent in favor). The payback will be 0.12 mills in the first year and 0.62 mills after that—the loan will be paid back over eight years. It will pay for technology, lighting, security and energy improvements, improving sites at school facilities and new school buses.
Bates Township: Grant Helgemo got the Democratic nomination for a new term as supervisor with 171 votes to 104 for Douglas L. Bonno.
Teresa Nelson (39) defeated Lisa M. Gasperini (19) in the Republican race for treasurer—the position Franzene gave up to run for county treasurer. Left for November: the township clerk race.
Crystal Falls Township: No primary races. In November, two trustees are to be elected, with just one name on the ballot.
Hematite Township: No primary races. In addition, the entire Library Board was re-elected: Judith Cornelia, Beverley Dallafior, Chrissie Heimerl, Helen Rae Hord, Enola Lang and Tanya Stebbins. No opposed races in November.
Iron River Township: Robert Tulppo won a three-way Republican race for treasurer. He got 48 votes to 22 for Sherry Tarsi and 21 for Nancy K. Clements, the incumbent. Another incumbent, Amber Laturi, won the Democratic race for township clerk with 158 votes to 84 for Dawn Pisoni.
In November, there are contested races for supervisor and trustee.
Mansfield Township: No primary races. Voters will pick two trustees from three candidates in November.
Mastodon Township: No contested races in either the primary or November election.
Stambaugh Township: The two incumbents, Kevin S. Isaacson and George Brunswick, won a three-way race for trustee seats. Isaacson led with 199, Brunswick got 121, and Julius Bonel got 116. No contested races in November.
Just two primary races were on the ballot for state and federal offices.
Among the Republicans, Pete Hoekstra, who won statewide, was the clear Iron County favorite in the four-man race for U.S. Senate. He got 60% of the vote (278 votes), followed by Clark Durant (94), Randy Hekman (51) and Gary Glenn (40).
Unopposed were District 1 U.S. Rep. Dan Benishek (500) and 110th District State Rep. Matt Huuki (461).
In the Democratic races, Scott Dianda easily outpolled William D. Lucius in the 110th District race, getting 78 percent of the vote—1,573 votes to Lucius’ 419. Dianda challenges Huuki in November.
Unopposed were U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow (1,839) and Congressional District 1 candidate Gary McDowell (1,728).
The following precinct delegates were elected. All ran unopposed.
Republicans: Alan Arcand, Caspian; Edward R. Chantiny, Crystal Falls; Erik Koenig, Iron River Precinct 3; Patricia Ashcraft, Crystal Falls Township; Aaron Mitchell, Stambaugh Township.
Democrats: Bonnie Goodman Passamani, Caspian; Ben Smith, Iron River Precinct 3.