Voters speak, elect new officials across the county
Tuesday the voters of Carbon County spoke and in turn they elected some incumbents and some new people to mayoral and council seats in towns around the area.
While Price Mayor Joe Piccolo was unopposed (he received 391 votes, while 27 people placed write in candidates on the ballot) some other towns had heated elections for the top man in their governmental operations.
In East Carbon incumbent Orlando LaFontaine won with over 55 percent of the vote, 227-174 over councilman Andy Urbanik. Eight people registered write-in votes for that office.
In Wellington Ben Blackburn got over 70 percent of the vote as he defeated Ed Chavez 219 to 88. Blackburn will replace present Mayor Karl Houskeeper, who did not run for office again.
Helper, where Mayor Mike Dalpiaz, who has served in two different decades in that job decided not to run again, Dean Armstrong came in the winner with over 65 percent of the vote over long time councilman Kirk Mascaro 348-178.
In Sunnyside, Doug Parson won the race for mayor 55-25 over Tracy Lee Stratton. Present and long term Mayor Bruce Andrews did not run again.
In contested city council races Wellington, Helper and East Carbon all have some new and old faces that will be meeting at their respective cities meetings.
In Wellington, Kirt Tatton (165 votes) and Amber Adair (162 votes) defeated Rory Bradley (153 votes) and Ray Reddington (110 votes) for the two council seats open there.
In Helper the four year council race was won by Chris Pugliese (347 votes) and Gary Harwood (314 votes). Eliminated from the race was Orlando Ochoa who got 297 votes. In the two year race, Brandon Wise (363 votes) and Robert Bradley (337 votes) beat out Donald Mortensen (218 votes) for those two openings.
East Carbon elected Darrell Valdez (253 votes) and Cheryl McFarland (205 votes) for the four years council seats. The defeated candidates included incumbent Darlene Ann Kuhns (190 votes) and challenger David Fryer (140 votes). In the one year race James Wayman (229 votes) defeated Gabriel K. Hunt (164) for the two year seat.
Unopposed candidates in various towns included councilwomen Kathy Hanna Smith (402 votes) and Jeanne McEvoy (396 votes) in Price, Michael Erkkila, Scofield mayor (10 votes) and Nola Porter (72 votes) for Sunnyside City council.
In the only race non-incorporated county residents could vote in, Keith Cox (243 votes) defeated Tom Matthews (109 votes) for the open seat on the Price River Water Improvement District board.
The overall turnout for the election was very light according to Alexis Horsley, the Carbon County deputy clerk.