Special Districts ballot finalized

The names are in.

Filings concluded Thursday for the May 21 Special Districts election in Hood River County. Ballots will be mailed in a little over a month.

There will be a total of four contested races in balloting for 16 different special taxing districts — every port, education, water, sanitation, parks, transportation and fire district in the county.

Jan Veldhuisen Virk, the longest-tenured board member, will have a challenger in Tim Counihan of Hood River in the at-large position for the Hood River County School District Board of Directors.

Mark Johnson filed for re-election and newcomers David Russo and Julia Ramirez will run unopposed for the other two open school board seats.

Four men are running for three positions on the Wy’East Fire District board: Rodney Hasty, Chuck Weseman, Rob Graves and Eric Cedarstam.

Four candidates signed up for two positions on the Hood River Valley Parks and Recreation Commission: Rob Kovacich, Renee Vandegriend, John Everitt and Greg Davis.

In the Odell Sanitary District there are two positions and three hopefuls: Steven Smith, Butch Gehrig and Bob Duddles.

Hood River Port commissioners Fred Duckwall, Jon Davies and Rich McBride each filed for re-election, with no challengers.

In Cascade Locks, Jess Groves, Joeinne Caldwell and Scott Sullenger all filed for re-election — all are unopposed.

Charlene Fort, Paul Zastrow and Susan Gabay will run unopposed for three positions on the Columbia Gorge Education Service District board.

Also on the ballot are positions on the boards of Hood River County Transportation District, Mt. Hood Community College (serving Cascade Locks), and the Hood River Library District.

Special district election will be vote by mail. Turnout for the previous county election, in November, reached 83 percent.

The full list of candidates will appear in the March 27 Hood River News.

Here is the May 21 election timeline:

April 6 — Military/out-of-country ballots mailed

April 22 — Out-of-state ballots mailed

April 30 — Voter registration deadline

May 3 — Ballots mailed

May 21— Election day

June 10 — Certification of election results

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Latest video:

Lawnmower torches Arbor Vitae on Portland Drive

The riding lawn mower driven by Norma Cannon overheated and made contact with dry arbor vitae owned by Lee and Norma Curtis, sending more than a dozen of the tightly-packed trees up in flames. The mower, visible at far right, was totaled. No one was injured; neighbors first kept the fire at bay with garden hoses and Westside and Hood River Fire Departments responded and doused the fire before it reached any structures. Westside Fire chief Jim Trammell, in blue shirt, directs firefighters. The video was taken by Capt. Dave Smith of Hood River Fire Department. Enlarge



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