Zender, Bargen seek to fill 7th district seat on board

LAPEER COUNTY — Later this year Ian Kempf’s 19 years on the Lapeer County Commission will come to an end. The Republican, who represents Almont and Imlay City area residents at the county level, will not seek re-election for his current position but instead has set his sights on the Lapeer County Drain Office. In August, Kempf will challenge incumbent Joe Suma, a fellow Republican from Attica, for the full-time job.

Suma’s had the job since 2012 when he defeated John Freeman, an incumbent. He last faced challengers in 2016.

That’s not the only primary battle shaping up among the GOP ranks this summer.

The race for Lapeer County prosecutor will be decided in August when incumbent Michael Sharkey and fellow Republican challenger John Miller face off. Four years ago Sharkey himself ousted the incumbent prosecutor, Tim Turkelson, in the Republican primary four years ago. Both Sharkey and Miller are Lapeer residents.

Likewise, two Republicans will battle it out for a seat on the Lapeer County Road Commission—incumbent Dale Duckert of Imlay City and challenger Terry Jostock of Lapeer.

In August, voters in Kempf’s 7th District will chose his successor. Two Republicans—Bryan Zender of Almont and Walter Bargen of Imlay City—have filed to fill the seat. Lapeer County’s 7th District includes Almont and Imlay townships, the city of Imlay City and village of Almont.

Two Lapeer residents will face off in the August primary on the Democratic side of the ballot for the 82nd House seat. Voters will chose between Kurt Hausauer and Jerry Tkach. The winner of that contest will move on to the November election where they’ll be opposite incumbent Gary Howell, a Republican. The 82nd House seat encompasses all of Lapeer County.

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At the township level, some municipalities are preparing for multiple races-namely Attica, Dryden and Goodland townships-while in others, like Imlay and Arcadia townships, all will be quiet on the election front. Three incumbent supervisors are being challenged—Attica’s Al Ochadleus, Dryden’s Tina Papineau and Goodland’s Ron Cischke—and there are several contests to fill trustee seats.

Here are the candidate listings in contested races for Tri-City area townships. All candidates are Republican: (I indicates incumbent)

In Almont Twp., trustee Clay Stroup opted to not seek reelection this year.

Trustee: Four seats
•Rick Dodge
•Randy Eschenburg
•Gary Groesbeck (I)
•Steven Hoffa (I)
•Kimberly Streeter (I)

In Attica, there will be a race for every board position and one office holder, current Clerk Nancy Herpolsheimer, is looking to assume a new title.

•Austin McLellan
•Al Ochadleus (I)
•Tom Tullio

•Valerie Schultz
•Mary Tullio

•Mellisa Kyte
•Pam Mason (I)

Trustee: Two seats
•Nancy Herpolsheimer
•Richard Lacey (I)
•Diane Malczewski
•Mark Ochadleus
•William Winslow

In Dryden Township, Treasurer Carol Stone has opted to not seek reelection.

•Justin Evans
•Tina Papineau (I)

•Susan Lowney
•Heather Seidell

Trustee: Two seats
•Carol English (I)
•Brian Hazen
•Kim Klobucar (I)

In Goodland Township, there’s a four-way race for two trustee seats.

•Michael Bissett
•Ron Cischke (I)

Trustee: Two seats
•Michael Juip (I)
•Norm Tanis (I)
•Bob Van Den Berg
•Matthew Van Dyk