MORRISON – The Nov. 8 election results have been certified, and the Whiteside County Board on Monday held an organizational meeting to determine who on the 27-member panel will serve two-year terms, and who will serve four.
Members also chose new leadership. Longtime incumbent Republican Martin Koster will take the gavel from Democrat Jim Duffy, perhaps reflecting the change in the balance of power from a Democratic to a Republican majority.
Many of the members are returning incumbents, but there are some new faces, and one seat, a Republican spot in District 3, is in need of an appointee.
That’s because former Morrison police Chief Brian Melton, who ran for the position, was given the job of Morrison city administrator, but too late to remove his name from the ballot. He cannot serve as both a county board member and the town’s administrator, because it poses a conflict of interest that is prohibited by state statute.
The Whiteside County Republican Central Committee is accepting applications from those interested in serving the two-year term, which ends in November 2024. The new board member will be seated at the Dec. 20 meeting.
To be eligible, an applicant must be a resident of Albany, Erie, Fenton, Fulton, Morrison or Prophetstown or the townships of Albany, Clyde, Erie, Fenton, Fulton, Garden Plain, Mt. Pleasant, Newton, Portland, Union Grove or Ustick.
He or she also must be a Republican, and a registered voter for at least a year.
“We are seeking a conservative Republican individual with a solid Republican primary voting history,” committee Chairman Kurt Glazier said in a news release, and applicants’ voting histories will be verified.
A bio with information such as work experience, participation with any boards such as city, village, company or nonprofit boards and a short paragraph as to why the applicant wants to serve on the board must be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org by 6 p.m. Sunday.
Interviews will be held the week of Dec. 12.
Call or text 815-441-4737 for more information.
So, minus Melton, here are the Whiteside County Board election results, including how many years the member will serve, his or her party and whether they are returning incumbents:
2 Joan Padilla (D) (i)
4 Vice Chairman Kurt E. Glazier (R) (i)
4 James C. Duffy (D) (i)
2 Sally Douglas (R)
2 Thomas L. Ausman (D) (i)
4 Alex Regalado (D)
2 Michael J. Clark (R)
4 Thomas P. Witmer (R) (i)
4 Ernest Smith (D) (i)
4 Douglas Wetzell (R) (i)
2 Barry L. Cox (R)
2 Matt Ward (R)
2 Brooke Pearson (R) (i)
4 Linda Pennell (R) (i)
4 Glenn C. Truesdell (D) (i)
4 Shawn Dowd (D) (i)
4 Paul J. Cunniff (D) (i)
2 Brhenan Linke (R)
4 Sue Britt (D) (i)
2 Daniel L. Bitler (D) (i)
4 Glenn A. Frank (R) (i)
2 Chairman Martin Koster (R) (i)
2 Mark Hamilton (R) (i)
4 Larry Russell (R) (i)
4 Chad Weaver (R) (i)
2 Douglas E. Crandall (R)
(i) designates incumbent
As is required after every U.S. census, all 27 seats, nine in each district, were on the ballot. That means all terms will end in 2032, when the post-census process will return.
Five Democratic Whiteside County Board incumbents – Fidencio Hooper-Campos and Owen Harrell in District 1, and Karen Nelson, Katherine A. Nelson and George P. Kelly in District 2 – lost their races, which means their now are 17 Republicans and 10 Democrats, whereas before there were 15 Democrats and 12 Republicans.
In all, seven newcomers – one Democrats and two Republicans in District 1, three Republicans in District 2, and one Republican in District 3 – also won spots.
One District 2 newcomer did not run in the June primary.
Barry Cox, a Republican and former Sterling City Council alderman, was slated by the party because it did not have the full complement of nine Republicans at the time.