Candidate petitions fall short for city, school board to hold election April 12

Five nominating petitions for four Haakon School District Board of Education seats were filed by the deadline of 5:00 p.m., Friday, February 25. Those petitions were filed by challengers Doug Thorson and Tim Quinn, and by incumbents Vonda Hamill, Scott Brech and Anita Peterson.

Only two nominating petitions for Philip City Council positions for Wards I, II and III were filed by the same deadline. Councilmen Greg Arthur and Tom Struble have filed petitions for reelection, and are unopposed. Monte Palecek has stated that he will not be seeking reelection. Now, unless Palecek officially resigns, he will automatically refill his current seat for the next term. If he does officially resign, then a resident of that ward will be appointed to fill that seat.

To be eligible to vote in the April 12 school board election, a resident must be registered to vote no later than March 28. Registration may be done at the Haakon County auditor's office, the municipal finance office, secretary of state's office, or any location that provides driver's licenses, military recruitment or assistance to the disabled as provided by the Department of Human Services. Voter registration can also be done at any location that provides Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, or Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children.

The school board seats are voted on at-large, rather than by separate districts. The petitioners were given the option of running for the two seats that have been appointed and have two years remaining on those terms, or of running for the two, three-year term seats. Brech and Peterson will run unopposed to refill their current full-term seats. Bill Slovek has chosen not to run for reelection to refill his appointed seat. Hamill will be defending her appointed seat against challengers Thorson and Quinn. Two of the three candidates will win seats on the Haakon School District Board of Education.

The school board holds regular meetings 12 times per year. Committee meetings and special meetings are rare. Members receive $50 per meeting. They also receive mileage to and from those meeting at the state rate if they request it, though such requests have traditionally not been regularly filed by board members.

Terms begin with the July board meeting, which is the start of the district's fiscal year. During that meeting, the new or renewing members take their oath of office. Next year the seats currently held by Kelly Blair and Mark Radway will be up for election.