There are plenty of contested races in municipalities in Northern Carbon County for the Primary Election on Tuesday, May 21.
The challenges include a two-person race for the Democratic nomination for a six-year term as Banks Township supervisor; two persons seeking the Democratic nod for mayor of Beaver Meadows, as well as a seven-person race for four nominations for four-year terms on the council; a two-person race for the Republican nomination for a six-year term as Lehigh Township supervisor; and five persons aspiring to four nominations on each ballot for four-year terms on the Weatherly Area School District Board of Education. Also, voters in Banks Township and Beaver Meadows Borough will participate in balloting for four four-year terms on the Hazleton Area School District Board of Education, where there are eight candidates on each ballot.
Otherwise, there are no contested races in either East Side or Weatherly boroughs, nor Lausanne or Packer townships.
A breakdown of what to expect on the ballots in the Lehighton area communities includes:
There are five township positions to be filled by the voters this year.
The six-year term of Supervisor Walter L. Bobowski, a Democrat, is expiring at the end of the year and he is seeking his party's nomination in the Primary Election. He faces opposition from Democrat Joseph Clark. There is no Republican candidate.
Tax collector Irene Makowiec, also a Democrat, is running for re-election to another four-year term of office. She is unopposed on both tickets.
Banks voters will also select an auditor for a six-year term. Democrat William Paul Dever is the lone candidate for the position on either ballot.
Democrats Gloria J. Dercole and Pattie Moro are the only other persons whose names appear on the township ballot. Dercole is running unopposed for the inspector of elections position and Moro is without opposition for the judge of elections post. Both are four-year terms.
There will be plenty of choices for Beaver Meadows Democratic voters to make in the Primary Election, as seven persons are seeking four nominations for seats to open on the town council. Two Democrats are also vying for the mayor's job.
For council, the Democrats have to choose from Joseph Steber, Robert J. Cryder, E. Kathleen Moro, Suzanne Hines, Jeffrey S. Bobish, Brian Katchur and Martha Steber. The top four finishers in that race will face three Republicans who are running unopposed. They include Robert D. Rossi, Mary Rayno and Thomas Katchur.
Rossi, Bobish, Brian Katchur and Rayno are the incumbents.
Mayor William E. Hines' four-year term is set to expire. He is not a candidate. Voters have choices for that nomination on the Democratic tickets, where Bobish and Rossi are running. The winner will face Brian Katchur, who is running unopposed on the GOP side.
The current tax collector, Michael Komishock, a Republican, is running for a four-year term of his own. He was appointed earlier this year to fill the unexpired term of Moro, who resigned. There is no Democratic candidate.
Beaver Meadows voters are also scheduled to elect two auditors this year, although no one has filed a petition to have their name appear on either ballot.
Also running this time around are Republicans John Tranguch and Judith Tranguch. John is seeking the four-year term as judge of elections and Judith is Running for the four-year term of inspector of elections. Neither has opposition on either ticket.
A race for the Republican nomination for a six-year term on the Lehigh Township Board of Supervisors exists in this year's Primary Election.
Incumbent Wayne Wagner is seeking re-election to that post, but has opposition from Republican Michelle Clark. There is no Democratic candidate.
Tax collector Teresa M. Barna is running for re-election to another four-year term. She has no opposition from either party.
The township voters are also slated to elect an auditor to a six-year term. There are no candidates for the post.
Lehigh voters will also elect a judge of elections and two inspectors of elections (one from each party). Republican Larry D. Skinner is seeking the judge of elections post. The candidates for the inspectors of elections positions are Republican Sharlene Strauss and Democrat Barbara A. Tissier.
Weatherly Area School Board
There are five positions on the Weatherly Area School District Board of Education to be filled this time around. Voters will elect persons to four four-year terms and another person to a two-year term.
Three incumbents are among the candidates, including Corey E. Gerhart, Amy L. Potsko and Girard A. Fewins Sr. All three appear on both ballots for the four-year terms. Joining them are Victoria Elliott and Brandon Pugh. The top finishers on the Democratic side will face the top four finishers on the GOP ballot in November.
Incumbent directors John Toth Jr. and Bonita Urban, whose terms are set to expire this year, are not candidates.
Potsko is the lone candidate for the two-year term. Her name appears on both ballots.
Voters in Weatherly and East Side boroughs and Lehigh, Lausanne and Packer townships, as well as those who reside in Kidder Township's North District comprise the district's at-large balloting.
Hazleton Area School Board
Voters in Banks Township and Beaver Meadows will also participate in the balloting for positions on the Hazleton Area School District Board of Education. There are eight candidates running for four four-year terms of office to be filled this year.
Running on both the Democratic and Republican tickets are Steven Hahn, Carmella Yenkevich, Clarence John, Thomas J. Chirico, James G. Chapman, Bob Mehalick, Jared M. O'Donnell and Fred Frederick Mariano.
East Side Boro
There is a shortage of candidates this time around in East Side Boro. In fact, no one is running on either ballot for the tax collector's position. The current four-year term of Lisa A. Jones is set to expire at the end of the year.
Voters in the borough will also elect/re-elect a mayor and three council positions, all for four-year terms.
Mayor Gerald Jones Jr., a Democrat, is running for re-election and is unopposed both on the party's ballot and on the GOP side as well.
Three council seats are set to expire. They are held by Sharon Mrozinski, Elizabeth Berger and Helen Jones. Mrozinski and Berger, both Democrats, are running for re-election. Helen Jones is not. There are also no Republican candidates for borough council.
East Side also does not have any candidates for the four-year terms of judge of elections and inspector of elections.
There are no contested races on the Lausanne Township municipal ballot. In fact, no one is running for a six-year term on the board of supervisors, where Edward S. Klynowsky, a Democrat, is not seeking re-election.
Tax collector Carol Tulay is running for re-election to a four-year term. She has no opposition from either party.
Lausanne voters will also elect a judge of elections and two inspectors of elections (one from each party). The only candidate is Democrat Dolores M. Surochak, who is seeking the inspector of elections position.
The township voters are scheduled to elect an auditor to a six-year term. There are no candidates for the post.
There are no contested races in Packer Township this time around. In fact, no one is even running for the tax collector's position, a four-year term being vacated by Lynn Nyer.
Packer voters will vote for a six-year term of township supervisor. Republican Grover Gerhard is running again and is unopposed on the GOP ticket. There is no Democratic candidate.
Three auditors' positions are also slated to be filled by the electorate, for terms of six, four and two years. There are no candidates on either ballot for the posts.
Township voters will also elect a judge of elections and two inspectors of elections, all for four-year terms. Republican Thomas D. Russell is running for unopposed for the judge of elections position while Republican Eleanor Walters is the lone candidate for inspector of elections. There is no Democratic candidate for either of the positions.
Weatherly Borough voters are expected to vote on four council positions in the May Primary Election, but there are only three candidates for the four-year terms.
They include Republicans Norman Richie, Harold Farrow and Cecelia Gower. A fourth incumbent whose term is set to expire, Joseph D'Andrea, is not on the ballot, nor are there any Democratic candidates.
Robert Chippi has publicly announced he is running a write-in campaign for a seat on the council, although he has not indicated what party nomination he is seeking.
Tax collector Sandra E. Eroh, a Democrat, is running for re-election to a four-year term and is unopposed on both ballots.
Weatherly voters will also fill judges of elections and inspectors of elections positions in each of the two election precincts in the borough. The candidates for the four-year terms are: District 58 - Democrat Mildred Selert, judge of elections; and Democrat Theresa I. D'Andrea and Republican Virginia Houser, inspectors of elections; and District 61 - Democrat Linda Jemo and Republican Ruth Sabol, inspectors of elections.