With about a week until Election Day, more than 1,000 Highland County voters have cast or requested early ballots in the upcoming General Election, including 530 Republicans, 179 Democrats and 324 unaffiliated voters, as of about 2 p.m. Monday.
Within the city of Hillsboro, where contested city council and city treasurer races are being held, ballots have been cast or requested by 159 Republicans, 65 Democrats and 68 unaffiliated voters. Those totals include mailed ballots, in-person voting, and hand-carried ballots, mostly involving people in nursing homes.
Voters who live in the city and who have walked into the election board to cast ballots in person include 103 Republicans, 35 Democrats and 15 unaffiliated voters, according to election board statistics.
Voters in Hillsboro are also among those who are deciding races for Liberty Township trustee, where six candidates are vying for two seats, as well as for Hillsboro City Schools Board of Education, where four candidates are competing to fill three seats.
In Greenfield, where village council, school board and trustee races are the ballot, early ballots have been cast or requested by 28 Republicans, 16 Democrats and 45 unaffiliated voters.
Of the 1,033 early votes in the county as a whole, among them are 427 voters who have cast ballots in person at the board office, including 260 Republicans, 104 Democrats and 63 registered as unaffiliated.
Four years ago, in a similar election also featuring city and village council races, school board contests and township trustee races, 6,895 Highland County voters ended up casting ballots, a 27 percent turnout rate.
At the close of voter registration on Oct. 10 for the Nov. 7 election, Highland County had 27,781 registered voters. Among those were 17,896 non-affiliated, or independent, voters, 7,826 Republicans and 2,059 Democrats.
The remaining hours of operation for early in-person voting at the local election board office located at the Hi-Tec Center in Hillsboro in the days leading up to the Nov. 7 election are: 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. each day through Friday; 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday; 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday; and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 6.
Hillsboro city candidates on the ballot this year, with incumbents noted by (i), are:
• Municipal Court Judge: David H. McKenna (i), Democrat.
• President of Council: Lee Koogler (i), Republican.
• City Treasurer: Patricia Burns, Democrat, Amy Robinson, Republican.
• Council-at-Large (3 to be elected): Brandon Leeth, Democrat; Tracy Aranyos (i) Republican (currently represents Ward 3); Justin Harsha (i), Republican; Ann E. Morris (i), Republican.
• Council Ward 1: Rob Smith, Democrat; Adam Wilkin, Republican.
• Council Ward 2: Jason L. Burns, Democrat; Claudia Klein (i), Republican.
• Council Ward 3: Tim Countryman, Democrat. Wendy Culbreath, Republican.
• Council Ward 4: Mary B. Stanforth, Democrat; Jason Grove, Republican.
This year’s non-partisan races stack up as follows, with incumbents noted by an (i).
Greenfield (2 seats): Eric Borsini, Phil Clyburn (i), Brenda Losey (i).
Highland (4 seats): Dianna Lynn Baker (i), Patricia Gilliland (i), Nathaniel Hawkins, Jeremy Kibbey (i), Aaron Ludwick.
Leesburg (4 seats): John Michael, Chris Runyon (i), Richard Tolle (i).
Lynchburg (4 seats): Judy Lee Davis (i), Elizabeth Hamlin (i), David Minton, Tagg Pendleton (i), Trudi Tedrick.
Mowrystown (4 seats): No candidates filed.
Sinking Spring (4 seats): No candidates filed.
Bright Local (2 seats): Steven Cox, Angela K. Wright. Unexpired term ending 12-31-19 (1 seat): John D. Gillespie.
Fairfield Local (2 seats): James Craycraft (i), John Lawson, Rindy L. Matthews (i).
Greenfield Exempted (3 seats): Amy Ernst, Marilyn Mitchell (i), Charley Roman, Eric Zint (i).
Hillsboro City Schools (3 seats): Doug Ernst, Larry Lyons, Beverly Rhoads, Jerry Walker. Unexpired term ending 12-31-19 (1 seat): William H. Myers. Note: Ernst and Lyons are currently serving on the board through appointments. Myers is a current board member but is running for the unexpired term left by Terry Britton’s election as county commissioner.
Lynchburg-Clay (2 seats): Kristen L. Greenawalt, Gary West (i).
Township Trustees (all with 2 to be elected)
Brushcreek: David T. Cruea (i), Danny McBee (i).
Clay: Kenneth L. Bohl (i), William Brett Glover (i), Glenn Watson II.
Concord: Jason Campbell (i), Tony Gulley (i).
Dodson: Randy Mitchell (i), Ty Smith (i).
Fairfield: Michael Pfister (i), Kenneth Stevens (i).
Hamer: Jon Holbrook (i), Bruce Leininger (i).
Jackson: Chad Frazer (i), Brad Hart (i).
Liberty: Douglas Barker, James Grove (i), Tyler Kelch, John McLaughlin (i), Ray Walker, Jerry Williams.
Madison: Bruce Baird (i), Charles Buck (i), Brent Johnson.
Marshall: Tim Sheeley (i), Clinton Shoemaker (i).
New Market: Kenny Harless (i), Thomas Juillerat (i).
Paint: Jason Hinkle, Steven Karnes (i), Corey J. Miller (i).
Penn: Jay Duncan (i), Derek Watson (i).
Salem: John R. Roush, Zach Sandlin, Shane Simmons (i), Neal Van Saun.
Union: John Henize (i), Joseph Fraysier (i).
Washington: Michael Countryman (i), Travis Mootz (i).
Whiteoak: Charles Bratton (i), John Stephan (i).
Voters will see two state issues on the ballot, Issue 1 called Marcy’s Law, a crime victim bill of rights, and Issue 2, the Drug Price Relief Act.
Local issues include: a Sinking Spring renewal of a 4 mill, five year levy for current expenses; a Brushcreek Township renewal of a 2 mill, five year levy for fire protection; a Union Township additional cemetery levy of 0.5 mills for five years; and a local option in Hillsboro Southeast 23 precinct for Big Ernie’s to have Sunday sales of alcohol.
Reach Gary Abernathy at 937-393-3456 or on Twitter @abernathygary.