By Adam Thorp
This April’s election will feature crowded races for Pike County’s 911 Board, among other county and municipal offices.
Ballots in the area were fixed when the deadline for new filings passed in mid-January. The election will be held on April 3.
A non-partisan, seven-member 911 Board took responsibility for the county’s 911 emergency dispatch system at the beginning of 2019. In November, voters passed proposition 911, which created a 9/16 of one percent sales tax to fund 911 operations in the county. Open positions include a county-wide seat and three seats each elected by an Eastern and Western District, equivalent to the two districts used in voting for the Pike County Commission.
In the Eastern District, Rhonda Stolte Darnell and Larry LaFave will be running for a four-year term on the 911 Board. Andy Young, Kevin Keely, and Bill Sterne will vie for two seats with two-year terms.
In the Western District, Robert A. Jones, Barbara (Marshall) Luckett, Adam Johnston, Mark Bair, and Holly (Turner) Leverenz will compete for to serve one four-year term. Richard “Al” Murry, Snookie Ward, Whitney Long, and Clarence L. Henke are running for two seats with two-year terms.
Four of the candidates have served on the board in an appointed capacity in the period before elections could be held to fill the seats: LaFave (representing Pike County Fire Chiefs and Fire Departments), Murry (other emergency services)), Keely (representing the general public), and VanHooser (ambulance service)
The Pike County R-II School District School Board also features a competitive election, with four candidates on the ballot for two three-year terms: Kimberly Hunter, Linda Perrone, Christy Kuntz, and Michele “Mickie” Henderson. Hunter is currently serving as the vice-president of the board.
Four candidates are in the race to fill three two-year terms on the Board of Trustees for the Village of Eolia: John J. Burbridge, Kathleen Watson, Tim Graham, and Mick Harding. John Burbridge and Kathleen Watson currently serve on the board.
Louisiana’s first, second and third wards will feature unopposed election campaigns. Kathy Smith (Ward I) and Nancy L. Moss Evans (Ward II) will each run to retain their seats for another two-year term. Ward I is Louisiana’s northernmost ward. Ward II consists of all but a few blocks of the city south of Georgia St.
Two Council candidates will run for offices they were appointed to in November: Kiffany Ardeneaux, who was appointed to represent Ward II after Myles Neff vacated the seat after moving to a new ward and Jeffrey Salois, who was appointed to represent Ward III after Chuck Hoffman resigned. Ward III represents the central part of Louisiana, mostly north of Georgia St.
Incumbents Jenna Loveless and James York are running for three-year terms on the School Board for the Louisiana R-II School District.
In Clarksville, Mayor Jo Anne Smiley will run unopposed for another two-year term. Alderman Sue Lindemann is running unopposed to continue representing the southern parts of the city in the First Ward for the next two years.. Alderman Don Mirick, who won a seat representing the northern parts of the city in the Second Ward in 2018, is running unopposed for a new, two-year term in that position.
In the Village of Paynesville, Nancy Chier, Lamont Davis, and Steve Eisele are running for three seats on the village’s Board of Trustees.
Allen L. Lockard is running to serve a five-year term as a Board Member of the Pike County Memorial Hospital. Michael E. Minor is running for a one-year term as a commissioner of the louisiana Special Road District.
In the western portion of Pike County, three incumbents are running unopposed for alderman in Bowling Green: Diane Kirkpatrick (Ward I), Terry Burris (Ward II), and Kim S. Luebrecht (Ward III). In Frankford, John Schindler is running for another two-year term as mayor and Tammy Epperson and Eddie Heffner are running for at-large seats as alderman. All three are incumbents.
Residents in the Bowling Green R-1 School District will vote on a $6,500,00 bond issue for school facilities. Residents of Frankford will vote on a tax increase of 13 cents for every $100 valuation.
Voters can find their polling places online at the Secretary of State’s website or by calling the county clerk’s office at 573-324-2412.
CORRECTION: The original version of this article gave the wrong name for Andy Young of Eolia, who is running for a two-year term term on the Pike County 911 Board for the Eastern District. We regret the error.