Alan Hanks v. Bonnie Redden
Hanks' victory, and the margin (nearly 70 percent) were no surprise. Hanks hasn't done anything in office that would warrant throwing him out of office in favor of an ill-prepared and under-funded Bonnie Redden. Frankly, I'm surprised 3,092 voted for Bonnie. I thought the margin would be much worse.
Alderman, Ward 4
Ron Kroeger will face John Roberts in a runoff. He nearly scraped by with 49.96. I'm told by others that Roberts knocked on a lot of doors. But the folks in Ward 4 have in the past returned Kroeger to office with some regularity. In my first run for Ward 3 council, I lost to Steve Rolinger, and the city was better for it. Rolinger (disclosure: Steve was my campaign treasurer when last I ran in Ward 3 against Martha Rodriguez) came in third. Steve has had some bad ink, bad luck and has had some not-so-good judgement (who among us hasn't?). Still, he was a damned good councilman and I've little doubt he would have made an excellent contribution.
I do not know John Roberts. I do know Ron Kroeger, and have a good deal of respect for him. I've known him for some time and he's never told me one thing and done another. He's extremely smart and I've seen nothing that would prevent me from voting for him if I lived in his Ward. That said, I suspect that if Roberts continues to work his ward as he has so far, he may be able to give Ron a race, but if Ron only gets a few of Rolinger's votes, he'll be returned to the council and the city will benefit from his quiet leadership.
Alderman, Ward 3
Bill Waugh will return to the council after defeating incumbent Bill Okrepkie and Dan Michael. Waugh is one of the best councilmen in recent memory. I like Okrepkie, but feel he has been on the wrong side of some of the more questionable TIFFs. I think he is sincere. But I also think he's sometimes difficult to reason with. Dan Michael is a perpetual candidate. He's run for mayor several times, and finally decided to try to work his way toward that job with service on the council. Unfortunately for him, he chose to run in a race with two popular incumbents.
Alderman, Ward 2
Deb Hadcock was returned to the council with 847 votes, just 82 votes more than first-time challenger Jeanette Deurloo. Deb has loyal followers. I've no doubt she's responsive to her constituents. But, she has in the past been controversial and she's among the first to sign up for expensive junkets. I think she works hard, but there is room for improvement... Her positions have almost always favored development, even when it isn't smart. And her position on feeding ducks at Canyon Lake is completely indefensible.
Alderman, Ward 1
Aaron Costello smoked challenger John Lundeen. Costello is an articulate, smart young man who hasn't done enough on the council to form a reasonable opinion about. He now has two years to learn to pick his projects, and his fights. He gets a pass for being new, for now.
Suzan Nolan defeated three others to win a seat at the most thankless table in politics. Incumbent Arnie Laubach came in a distant third. I don't know enough about any of the candidates to comment with confidence. Congratulations Ms. Nolan.
Incumbents Sheryl Kirkeby won her 3-way race handily. Incumbents Doug Kinniburgh and Bret Swanson were unopposed.
My opinion of the school board, in general, is that they don't understand who is boss (they are) and give the administration way too much rope with which to hang taxpayers. We shall hope Nolan brings a different point of view.