Residents are encouraged to vote in primary election

REMEMBER TO VOTE: Voters in Mecosta and Osceola counties have the opportunity to voice their opinions during the primary election on Tuesday, Aug. 7. Polls will be open to voters from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Pioneer file photo)

MECOSTA, OSCEOLA COUNTIES — As voters across the state line up for tomorrow’s primary election, residents of Mecosta and Osceola counties have the opportunity to make their voices heard.

“It’s important for everyone to get out and vote, and express their opinion through voting,” said Marcee Purcell, Mecosta County Clerk.

Osceola County Clerk Karen Bluhm added the primary election is when most of the local decisions are determined, and it’s peoples’ right as citizens to voice their opinions.

“It’s their chance to make a difference and be part of the process of selecting who represents (the community) and what proposals move forward,” she said.

With a variety of candidates on the ballot for both local and statewide elections, as well as several county and township millage proposals, the results of the primary could have a significant impact on these communities.

In Mecosta County, residents could see a change to the Board of Commissioners in November as current County Commissioner Tom O’Neil (R) is running against Michael Roberts (D) for the fifth district seat.

Commissioners Marilynn Vargo, Jerrilynn Strong, Linda Howard, Raymond Steinke, Mark Solis and Bill Routley are all running unopposed for their current seats on the board.

On the Green Charter Township Republican primary election ballot, James Chapman is running against Ross Meads for township supervisor.

There also is one open seat on the Chippewa Township Board of Trustees, with four Republican candidates; Debbie Carmichael-Zielinski, Alisa Hahn, Bryan Lee Roels and Annette Walters running for it.

Osceola County residents will see two opposed seats on the Republican primary election ballot, one being the seventh district seat, for which incumbent Larry Emig is running against Sally Momany.

Additionally, County Commissioner Alan Tiedt has chosen not to run again. To fill his seat for the fourth district, Timothy Michell is running against Robert Hoard.

James Custer is running unopposed for the sixth district seat as current County Commissioner Pam Wayne is not running.

Jill Halladay, Mark Gregory, Jack Nehmer and Roger Elkins are all running unopposed for their current seats on the Osceola County Board of Commissioners.

There also are many candidates in the statewide races for voters to consider, including the 33rd District Republican race for State Senate, in which Greg Alexander is running against Rick Outman. Mark Bignell is running against John Hoppough for the Democratic Party nomination. The 33rd District State Senate seat currently is held by Sen. Judy Emmons.

The Republican race for the 35th District State Senate seat has four candidates, Ray Franz, Bruce Rendon, Cary Urka and Curt VanderWall.

Mike Taillard (D) and Timothy Coon (L) also are running for a seat on the 35th District State Senate, which currently is held by Sen. Darwin Booher.

William Barnett is running against incumbent Michele Hoitenga in the 102nd District Republican race for State Representative.

In the 102nd District Democratic race for State Representative, Dion Adams is running against Bruce Reges.

Incumbent State Rep. Jason Wentworth is running unopposed in the 97th District Republican race. For the Democratic Party nomination, Bob Townsend is running against Celia Young-Wenkel.

In the 4th Congressional District Republican race for the U.S. House, incumbent John Moolenaar is running unopposed. Jerry Hilliard and Zigmond Kozicki are running against each other for the Democratic Party’s nomination.

The primary election ballot also will contain millage proposals from townships in Mecosta and Osceola counties regarding road construction and repair, fire protection services and more.

Polls will be open to voters from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 7.

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