LIVE BLOG: Juneau’s 2017 Municipal Election

8:45 p.m.: All 13 precincts have reported. Here are your unofficial results for the 2017 City and Borough of Juneau municipal election.

 

Assembly:

Areawide - Maria Gladziszewski wins with 3,582 votes over write-in candidate with 1,082 votes.

District 1 - Jesse Kiehl wins with 3,422 votes. Chuck Collins came in second with 1,470. Loretto Jones snagged 223 votes. Write-in candidate got 31 votes.

District 2 - Rob Edwardson (2,995 votes) wins over incumbent Debbie White (1,967). A write-in candidate received 45 votes. 

School Board:

Voters chose Jeff Short (2,666 votes) and Brian Holst (3,558) for School Board seats over Kevin Allen (1,574). A write-in candidate received 77 votes.

Prop 1 - passes 4,059 to 1,227

Prop 2 - passes 3,614 to 1,530

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8:34 p.m.: Only one precinct left (Juneau 1, Juneau 2, Juneau 3, Lemon Creek, Mendenhall Valley 1,  Mendenahll  Valley 2, Mendenhall Valley 3, Mendenhall Valley 4, North Douglas, Douglas Lynn Canal)

- Assembly District 1: Kiehl 3,025, Collins 1,337, Jones 204

- Assembly District 2: Edwardson 2,754, White 1,808

Yes to Prop 1

Yes to Prop 2

School Board: Jeff Short, Brian Holst leading

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8:31 p.m.: with 10 of 13 precincts reporting (Juneau 1, Juneau 2, Juneau 3, Lemon Creek, Mendenhall Valley 1, Mendenahll Valley 2, Mendenhall Valley 4, North Douglas, Douglas Lynn Canal)

- Assembly District 1: Kiehl 2,844, Collins 1092, Jones 169

- Assembly District 2: Edwardson 1,425, White 1,505

Yes to Prop 1,

Yes to Prop 2

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8:21 p.m.: With seven precincts reporting (Juneau 1, Juneau 2, Juneau 3, Lemon Creek, Mendenhall Valley 4, North Douglas, Lynn Canal)

- Assembly District 1: Kiehl 2,076, Collins 702, Jones 110

- Assembly District 2: Edwardson 1,755, White 1,001

- Assembly Areawide: Gladziszewski 3,006, write-in/Hughes 514

- School Board: Holst 1,993, Short 1,537, Allen 861

Significant that Edwardson beat White in Mendenhall Valley 4, 292-243. When she won in 2014, she took that precinct 149-112.

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8:15 p.m.: OK, we're just switching to totals now instead of precinct-by-precinct. We'll post significant differences in precincts, but not every tally. 

Totals through three precincts (Juneau 2, Juneau 3, Lemon Creek):

- Assembly District 1: Kiehl 599, Collins 196, Jones 43

- Assembly District 2: Edwardson 733, White 343

- Assembly Areawide: Gladziszewski 933, write-in/Hughes 134

- School Board: Holst 813, Short 603, Allen 346

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8:11 p.m.: Lemon Creek is in. 

Gladziszewski 172-54 over write-in. Kiehl gets 136, Collins gets 81, Jones gets 26. Edwardson barely beats out White there, 120-112. Yes on both proposals.

Holst 157, Short 111, Allen 109.

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8:08 p.m.: The first results are in, with Juneau Precinct 3 reporting. 

Assembly: Maria Gladziszewski earned 165 votes to Andy Hughes' 36 (or at least that's the write-in total). Kiehl gets 171 votes to Collins' 29 and four for Loretto Jones. Rob Edwardson gets 126 to Debbie White's 81. Voters there voted yes on both proposals.

School Board: Holst and Short earn 170 and 126 votes, respectively, to Kevin Allen's 59. 

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7:59 p.m.: Election results are about to start coming in. Follow along on our Facebook or on here. White, Rob Edwardson and Jeff Short are here. Current Assembly members Loren Jones and Jerry Nankervis also in attendance.

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7:13 p.m.: Early voting numbers are coming in.

According to the City Clerks Office, 1,085 people voted early this year, not including absentee via mail or fax. The breakdown was 480 at City Hall and 605 in the Mendenhall Valley. Those numbers are virtually the same as 2016, when 1,067 voted early (not including absentee via mail or fax). In 2016, 454 people voted at City Hall and 613 voted in the Valley.

With 45 minutes left until polls close, we're here at City Hall getting set up for Election Central, which starts at 8. Debbie White is the first candidate to arrive.

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5:28 p.m.: The big three in the Valley (Shepherd of the Valley, Glacier Valley, Aldersgate) are all experiencing a surge right now as people get off work. Still, numbers are down across the board.

Ken Mattson, an election official at Shepherd of the Valley, said he expects them to get right around 600 ballots today. Last year, Shepherd of the Valley had 695.

With two and a half hours to go until the polls close, Glacier Valley's at 300 and Aldersgate is at 319. They finished with 551 and 559, respectively, last year.

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4:48 p.m.: Things are slow in Lemon Creek. Bartlett Regional Hospital (which had the lowest turnout last year) is again pretty low, registering about 150 ballots as of 4:30. There have been 53 questioned ballots, though, and Precinct Chairperson Cherie Rudolph said it's usually that way. With doctors, nurses and visitors coming to see family and friends in the hospital, there are a ton of people from outside that precinct that come by.

At AEL&P, election officials are saying the same, that turnout is a little lower than usual so far. They've counted 167 ballots so far today (they had 314 there last year).

Precinct Chairperson Renée Hughes said that early voting probably played a factor, but the lack of attention-grabbing issues on the ballot also might be keeping people away.

"I think a lot of it is, there's nothing that is outstandingly controversial... The propositions have gotten some interest," Hughes said, "but it's not like it's overwhelming, something that 90 percent of the community feels like they have to come out and voice their opinion."

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3:52 p.m.: Back out on the road. Dropped by the Douglas Library, where the spread has been hyped up all around town today.

First things first, the current voter count is right around 250. There was a malfunction with the machine, election worker Sylvia Harvey said, and about 20 ballots wouldn't go through. They were able to get a replacement machine, and at the end of the day, they'll take those ballots and run them through again. Harvey said they're happy with the turnout so far for a municipal election.

Secondly, the spread is worth the hype. Cookies, donut holes, peanut butter chocolate bars, carrots, grapes, really just something for everybody. In the words of longtime Precinct Chairperson Stuart Sliter, "We do well." Harvey said that some people vote at Douglas, outside of their precinct (see more on that below), just for the food.

"We're given a hard time because we feed our voters," Harvey joked. "We bribe them to come. If they're gonna come out in the rain, they'll get something good for it."

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1:30 p.m.: During the afternoon lull, let's talk briefly about "questioned ballots." These ballots are ones cast by people who are not registered in the precinct where they're voting, who do not have ID or whose residence has changed. It also applies to those who are singled out by another observer who challenges the individual's qualifications, or someone who has already voted in another manner in the election. 

For example, Steve Lewis at the Nugget Mall voting precinct said that they get a good deal of questioned ballots because people from all over town are shopping at the mall and stop by to vote. Those who aren't registered in the "Juneau Airport Area" precinct are then required to file a questioned ballot. As of 10:45 a.m. today, there were eight questioned ballots filled out at the Nugget Mall.

Last year, there were 622 questioned ballots cast. Of those, 562 were cast by qualified voters, accepted and counted. That's 6.7 percent of the 8,408 ballots cast last year.

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Noon: As of 11:20 a.m., 89 people have voted at the UAS Rec Center. Last year, 534 people voted at UAS, giving it the seventh-highest turnout. As of 11:30 a.m., 80 votes had been cast at the ferry terminal (Lynn Canal Precinct). Last year, the ferry terminal had the fourth-lowest turnout, with 447 votes cast.

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10:51 a.m.: Slow start to the day at the Nugget Mall too. Precinct Chairperson Steve Lewis also theorizing that the rise in early voting is contributing to today's sluggish start.

"A lot more people know about it now," he said of early voting, "so they take advantage of that and don't have to plan their day around (voting). I think that plays a factor."

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10:38 a.m.: Not much to report from the Mendenhall Valley Library. So far, 49 ballots plus nine questioned ballots. Chairperson Corinna Williams said it's been slow but steady. She thinks the weather might be a factor in the slow start. Currently 46 degrees and rainy in the Valley.

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10:15 a.m.: Vivian Bearden, the chairperson at Aldersgate United Methodist Church in the Valley, said it's been a slow morning for her spot. So far, there have been 51 voters there. Bearden and co-chair Sharon Lowe said that with early voting numbers projected to be high, maybe that's taken away some of the Election Day voters.

Aldersgate has the best greeting of any polling place so far: Fresh cookies. Carol Kell, Charlie Mitchell and Barbara Mitchell are making chocolate chip, peanut butter and oatmeal cookies. Charlie said they've been doing this for about six or seven years. 

"You do it once, it works, and it becomes a tradition," Kell said, laughing.

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9:40 a.m.: Good, steady turnout in the Mendenhall Valley so far. As of about half an hour ago, Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church reported 75 ballots so far. In 2016, Shepherd of the Valley had the second-highest turnout (695). It's on pace for another strong turnout.

Across the street, Glacier Valley Baptist Church reports 53 ballots so far, and more have been streaming in. Volunteers there said it's been "steady" this morning.

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8:54 a.m.: School Board candidate Kevin Allen is now out on the corner of 10th and Egan by the bridge, holding a large sign. Most others have left the area at this point, so Allen has a whole corner to himself. He said he'll be here just a little longer, then has to head to University of Alaska Southeast, where he's the student government president.

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8:42 a.m.: Slow start to the day at the State Library, Archives and Museum, their volunteers say. As of now, 26 people have voted. Last year, 555 people voted here, the fourth-highest total of any spot. 

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8:25 a.m.: Stopped by the Fire Station polling place, and Precinct Chairperson Laura Fleming said there have been 35 voters there so far. Election worker Mark Johnson said that's a good start for a municipal election. For those curious, oatmeal cookies are available there. Made with coconut oil, Fleming said, so they're heart healthy.

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8:05 a.m.: Assembly candidates Chuck Collins, Rob Edwardson, Maria Gladziszewski and Jesse Kiehl are at the intersection of 10th and Egan (where the Douglas Bridge meets Egan) for the commuter crowd. School Board President Brian Holst, running for re-election, is also there. Collins and Kiehl were the first two to arrive, Collins said, at around 6:15 a.m. Gladziszewski arrived soon afterward, and Edwardson and Holst showed up a little after that. 

"It's a Juneau tradition," Collins said of candidates standing on that corner for the morning commute. He joked that he wished it were a Juneau tradition to stay inside and drink hot coffee, but he was having fun being out there.

Kiehl appeared to have the most signs out there, but Gladziszewski and Edwardson were also both well represented. Collins pointed out that he was shocked at how many signs Holst had out there, as the School Board race doesn't usually bring many people out for things like this. In talking to the three School Board candidates yesterday, it sounds like Holst is the only one out campaigning today. Kevin Allen said he doesn't have any big plans, and Jeff Short said he's been feeling under the weather lately so he won't be out in the rain and the cold.

As for the rest of the day, the candidates said they'll be at the intersection for just a little bit longer until the morning rush is over. Kiehl said he'll be going through his call list, and made an interesting point. He said that it takes much less time to get through his list of calls these days because of caller ID. People don't answer their phones as much as they used to, he said, and just let many of his calls go to voicemail. Therefore, his calls don't take as long to do if he's just leaving a message as opposed to actually chatting with someone.

Edwardson said he'll be making the rounds in the Mendenhall Valley after this. His family was out there with him and they seemed to be in very high spirits. Gladziszewski said she'll be going to work soon, and that she'll probably vote during her lunch break. She hasn't been able to get out and vote prior to today because of the busy election cycle, she said, and today's the culmination of it all.

"This is it," Collins said.

"It's all over but the vote," Gladziszewski said.

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7:15 a.m.: A pretty steady stream of voters coming in to Northern Lights. One voter said she saw campaigners out in force this morning at the intersection by the Nugget Mall and by the Douglas Bridge. That'll be our next stop.

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6:58 a.m.: Three voters have shown up here at Northern Lights United Church. The first one to show up, Forrest Bowers, said he usually votes in the afternoon but this year he was dropping someone off at the airport this morning so he decided to come vote early. He said he's lived in Juneau for seven years and votes every year. He said the best part of Election Day is the community coming together to put it on. He praised the volunteers specifically.

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Welcome to the Juneau Empire’s live blog for the 2017 Municipal Election! We’ll be posting updates here throughout the day, live from polling places throughout Juneau. The polls are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., and we’ll have you covered from when they’re open until long after they close.

If you are unsure where your polling place is, you can call the State of Alaska Polling Place Locator at 1-888-383-8683. Enter your Social Security Number or your voter number when prompted.

For those of you still on the fence about how you’ll vote, check out some of our coverage from the election thus far and links from the City and Borough of Juneau’s website:

Profiles and interviews with the seven Assembly candidates and three School Board candidates

CBJ’s Voter Information Guide

Sample ballot

Map of Juneau’s voting precincts

Details on Proposal 1

Details on Proposal 2

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