Shenandoah school bond issue fails

Unofficial results show the Shenandoah school’s $14.7 million bond issue for expansion and renovation of the high school failed by a vote of 746 in favor and 982 against. A 60% supermajority was necessary for the bond issue to pass.

 Dr. Kerri Nelson, Superintendent of Shenandoah Community School said the high school renovations that are covered by $5.8 million in SAVE revenues will continue as planned, but the new additions and repurposed space will not move forward at this time.

“We will take some time to evaluate the results, consider the feedback we have received, and make a decision about how best to move forward,” said Nelson.

As of press time Thursday, Nov. 7 all results are unofficial until the Page County Board of Supervisors canvass the election which may be Tuesday, Nov. 12. This was the first election in Iowa history with school and city seats on the same ballot. According to the Page County Auditor’s office, there were 2,555 ballots cast. The county has 10,160 registered voters making it a 25 % voter turnout.

Nelson said the law requires a six-month wait before a district can attempt another bond issue.

“I do want to thank Jesse Van Essen and Jenny Stephens, the Co-Chairs of the Invest to Grow Success Yes Committee, for their leadership and Ryan Spiegel for volunteering to manage the Facebook page to help with the bond issue,” said Nelson.

Nelson said many other volunteers helped with the campaign process, and she sincerely appreciates their efforts.

Shenandoah School Board had three candidates for two seats; Darrin Bouray, Jeff Hiser and Steven Martin. Bouray won one seat with 911 votes and Hiser won the other with 677. Martin finished with 523.

For Shenandoah City Council incumbent Aaron Green lost his at-large seat with 454 votes. Cynthia Allely-Arman won with 472 and Jennifer Elliott had 110. Ward 2 incumbent Robert Burchett lost to Jon Brantner 201 to 189.

Shenandoah Park Commission had two candidates for one seat; Jon Weinrich had 417 votes and Zac Zwickel won with 658.

Essex City Council had four candidates to fill the vacancy created by Rick Dailey. Nicole Wenstrand won with 95 votes. Patrick Glassinger had 25, Stacy Nelson, 42, and Jaime Simpson finished with 30.

There were also eight candidates for the three Essex City Council seats. Winners were Patricia Gay with 127; Calvin Kinney had 123 and Betty Lou Franks finished with 122. Others were Mark Dunn, 31; Susan Girouex, 21; Jeramy Hanson, 23; Donald Olson, 25 and Rod Riley, 88. Kinney and Gay were incumbents.

Essex School Board had four candidates for three seats. Incumbents Meredith Baker, 148; Brian Johnson, 184; and Doug Ohnmacht, 198, won. Cole Thornton finished with 113. The board had two candidates for two vacancies; incumbents Lori Racine, with 157 votes and Rebecca Franks, 197. Franks and Baker were appointed to the board in July. Ohnmacht was the only board member that has not changed since the first of the year.

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