The Houghton County prisoner catch and release program will have to continue after voters shot down a millage proposal to build an addition onto the jail. The proposal lost by 162 votes, 6,779 to 6,941. The millage would have raised the needed $11 million to vastly improve the current facility which remains dangerously overcrowded.
The Houghton County Board of Commissioners, with three newly elected members, will have to work out a solution before the county is hit with its first inevitable lawsuit. Board chair Al Koskela defeated Melissa Davis, Roy Britz beat out Sharon Stoll, and Gretchen Janssen defeated John Sullivan. They will join incumbent Tom Tikkanen and newly elected Glenn Anderson, both who ran unopposed Tuesday.
The Village of Calumet remains after a proposal to disincorporate failed at the polls Tuesday. Attempts to recall Village President Dave Geisler and Trustee Virginia Dwyer also fell short.
Calumet resident Nathan Anderson, who ran against Geisler in the recall election and wrote the petition to dissolve the village, received enough votes to serve on the Village Council. Jeffery Paul Mihelcich and Roxanne King were the top two vote getters respectively and will also serve full terms on the council. Joshua Rowe and Doug Harrer were elected to partial two year terms.
Passing in Houghton County were the Calumet Township Fire Department millage renewal, Chassell Township Recreation millage, Chassell Township Schools sinking fund, the Laurium Village millage, and road millages for Osceola, Stanton, and Torch Lake Townships.
Wendy Chynoweth and Michael Lancour were selected to serve on the Hancock School Board and Brad Baltensperger was elected to the Houghton-Portage Township School Board.
Patrick McLaren defeated Brian Wilder for Laird Township Supervisor.
Amy Skewes won the race for Portage Township Clerk and Christine Abramson was elected township treasurer.
In Baraga County, the L’Anse School Millage and the Baraga Area Schools Sinking Fund both passed, as did the Spurr Township Cemetery Fund.
There were no contested races for Baraga County Commissioner but with Patrick Reilly having to drop out of the election, Dan Robillard won with a successful write-in campaign.
Nancy Soli and Heather Stiebe were elected to the Arvon Township School Board and in L’Anse Township, Peter Magaraggia was elected Supervisor and Wallace Sweeney will serve as a trustee.
In Keweenaw County, Sandra Gayk defeated Randy Eckloff for the District 5 seat as the only contested race on the county board of commissioners.
Richard Olson won the race for county road commissioner and Keith DeForge pulled out a successful write-in campaign for Keweenaw County Probate Court Judge.
In Ontonagon County, the park fund and the cemetery fund for Interior Township both passed, as did Ontonagon Township Park and Stannard Township Fire Department millages.
Carl Nykanen beat out Pat Kitzman for the district four seat on the board of commissioners. No other seats were contested with the exception of District 5 which had no candidates on the ballot but 199 write in votes were cast.
David Roberts was elected Bergland Township Supervisor and John LaSota won in the race for Ontonagon Township Supervisor.
Serving on the Ontonagon Area School Board will be Rebecca Pantti, Tammy Strasser, Rebecca Bramlett, and Sue Lockhart.
John Hamm, Sarah Hopper, and Tony Smydra will serve as Ontonagon Village Trustees.
Michigan choice for the next Governor is Democrat Gretchen Whitmer. Whitmer defeated Republican Bill Schuette by a comfortable margin Tuesday. Democrat Dana Nessel holds a slight lead over Republican Tom Leonard for Attorney General as the final votes are tallied. Fellow Democrat Jocelyn Benson will be the next Secretary of State to round out a sweep of the Democrat all-female ticket.
No changes to those representing Michigan in Washington as Democrat Debbie Stabenow holds on to her seat in the US Senate and Republican Congressman Jack Bergman returns to the US House.
Republican Ed McBroom outlasted Democrat Scott Dianda for the 38th District State Senate seat. He will be joined by fellow Republican Greg Markkanen who pulled out a neck and neck contest versus Democrat Ken Summers to flip the 110th seat in the state house.
All three of Michigan’s statewide proposals passed easily, including the legalization for recreational marijuana, the commission to oversee redistricting, and the revamping of several voting regulations.
You can view all of the local contested election results here. Complete unofficial results can be found by clicking on the links below.