Parsch a winner in Imlay City contest

but won’t serve due to pending move

TRI-CITY AREA — As anticipated, voters turned out in record numbers for last week’s Nov. 3 general election.

In Lapeer County 73.6 percent of registered voters cast a ballot and that number was 69 percent in St. Clair County. Within the Tri-City area, participation rates were even higher in some municipalities like Dryden Township (82 percent in precinct 2) and 79 percent in Berlin Township.

The results showed that voters were generally favorable to millage renewals and selected a mix of incumbents and challengers to hold various positions in local and county government.

Since the unofficial results were released, Matt Parsch, the top vote-getter in the Imlay City School Board race for three seats, has announced he’ll be moving out of state and won’t be able to serve the term voters gave him. That means the makeup of the board will ultimately look different from what district residents decided.

“I am extremely humbled by the support I received at the polls on Tuesday,” Parsch said in a Facebook post.

The job offer came approximately three weeks ago and he opted to accept it last week after making a visit, he said.

“If I ever thought this would be a possibility, I would have never put my name in contention for an Imlay City School Board seat.”

Voters say ‘yes’

Millage renewals in Imlay City, Almont, Capac and Lynn Township were easily approved.

Imlay City’s street and sidewalk request passed 921 to 546.

Almont Township’s fire millage proposal passed 2,669 to 1,090.

Lynn Township voters approved the road millage renewal 435 to 219.

Capac’s streets millage was passed 576 to 295.

Requests for additional dollars in Berlin Township was successful. Voters approved a special assessment proposal to purchase new fire equipment 1,071 to 700.

Both the Lapeer County Veterans Affairs and 911 authority were successful in their proposal requests.

The VA’s proposal for a millage increase was passed by a wide margin—29,320 yes to 17,635 no votes.

A surcharge increase for 911 services was narrowly approved. Results show 23,708 votes were cast in favor and 23,392 were in dissent.

Voters say ‘no’

The results weren’t in Goodland Township’s favor for their library millage renewal. That request fell short by a margin of 53 votes—506 yes to 559 no.

Library Board Chairperson Mary Weemaes said the group is due to meet on Nov. 19 to discuss their options for moving forward.

Weemaes said
the library has some funding that they
can utilize in the
meantime to keep
their doors open.

A proposal to fund Lapeer County’s Animal Control operations failed to get the needed votes. The vote totals were 19,717 yes to 22,951 no.

School board
contests decided

In Almont, three seats were up for grabs and the winners in that contest were Angela Edwards with 1,866 votes, James Wade Jr. with 1,395 and Jill Bowman-O’Neil with 1,372.

Rounding out the field were Charlton Zimmerman with 1,334 votes and Justin Burns with 902.

Bowman-O’Neil is an incumbent.

In the race for two seats on the Capac School Board, Beverly Wheelihan (1,896) and incumbent Bill Ellis (1,767) were the top vote-getters. John Antilla netted 1,494 votes.

In Imlay City, seven candidates were in competition for three school board seats.

Winners in that crowded race were Matt Parsch with 2,607 votes, Laura Zelenak with 2,354 and Alex Lengemann with 1,895. That makes Zelenak the lone incumbent to retain her seat.

Vote totals for the rest of the field include Kaylee Kaeding with 1,793; Bill Lengemann with 1,569; Marcel Lamb with 1,397 and Carm Ross with 1,259. Kaeding and Lamb
currently sit on the board.

As noted earlier, Parsch will be moving out of the district before his term was due to begin in January so the board will be tasked with filling that vacancy by appointment.

Lapeer County
race results

Challenger Mike Hodges has unseated incumbent Circuit Court Judge Byron Konschuh in a non-partisan race for a six-year term.

Hodges received 23,687 votes to Konschuh’s 14,775.

Incumbent 82nd District Representative Gary Howell cruised to victory in his re-election bid. The Republican got 37,013 votes to Democrat Jerry Tkach’s 13,617.

A handful of contested races also played out at the village level in Lapeer County.

In Dryden, Alen Graham defeated Elizabeth Thiemkey for the council president post with a 267 to 203 vote tally.

And in Almont, the race for five council seats concludes with Tim Dyke (677), Nick Giacalone (648), James Aleck (619), Wayne Glasser (606) and Jacqueline Calka (584) getting the top votes.

Current council member Bernie Calka came in sixth place with 493 votes.

St. Clair County
race results

District Judge Mona Armstrong had 44,869 votes to challenger Caryn VanderHeuvel’s 20,035.

Armstrong was appointed to the bench earlier this year and is now poised to begin a new six-year term in January.

Gary Eisen easily won his re-election campaign to stay on as 81st District representative in the Michigan House. Democrat Debbie Bourgois received 15,289 votes to Eisen’s 33,240.

Also faring well in his re-election bid was Drain Commissioner Bob Wiley. The Republican had 55,231 votes to 30,896 for Democrat Fred Fuller.

In the contest to become Michigan’s 10th District Representative in Congress, Republican Lisa McClain emerged the victor over Democrat Kimberly Bizon.