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Fewer absentee voters show up at city polls

Posted: Monday, October 01, 2001

Absentee voting for Tuesday's city election is slower than last year, according to City Clerk Laurie Sica.

The total was about 645 absentee ballots as of this morning, with 294 voting downtown, 263 in the Mendenhall Valley and about 90 by mail, Sica said. Last year, about 1,200 people voted absentee.

Sica attributed the difference to fewer items on the ballot and people not traveling as much.

Voters will fill three Assembly and two School Board seats and decide whether to split funding for two high school projects in the election.

Polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. Tuesday. Absentee voting continues through 5 tonight at Assembly chambers and until 7 p.m. at the Mendenhall Center. Voters should be prepared to show identification when they go to the polls.

Each Assembly and School Board seat is a three-year term. All Juneau voters can cast ballots in each of the three Assembly races. Districts separate where the

candidates live.

Retired teacher and Rayco Sales clerk Tony Reiger and Juneau Airport Board member and real estate broker Jeannie Johnson are running for the District 1 seat, now filled by Assembly member Cathy Mu-oz.

Candidates for the areawide seat are incumbent Jim Powell, who works for the state Department of Environmental Conservation, and Chuck Collins, who owns Copy Works and Copy Express.

District 2 candidates are Clancy DeSmet, a project review coordinator with the Alaska Coastal Management Program; Dixie Hood, a therapist and mediator; and Randy Wanamaker, an environmental assessor and chairman of the board of directors for Goldbelt, Inc. The District 2 seat is now held by Assembly member John MacKinnon.

Incumbent Juneau School Board members Stan Ridgeway, deputy director of the state Division of Insurance, and Mary Becker, a retired teacher and community health coordinator for the Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium, are running unopposed for two seats.

Voters also will decide whether to split bond authorization to renovate Juneau-Douglas High School and to build a new high school at Dimond Park. The state has approved 70 percent reimbursement for the renovation project, but has not approved funding for the new high school. The proposition does not authorize any new debt.

One polling place has changed. The Lower Mendenhall 2 precinct voting is at the Church of Christ on Trinity Drive.

Juneau residents can monitor the results on election night at the Juneau-Douglas High School commons area, Sica said.

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Joanna Markell can be reached at joannam@juneauempire.com.



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