Election night in Carthage featured a number of close races for city council and school board, but nothing could top the nail-biter that had Joplin school officials sweating.
Incumbents held sway, however in most Carthage races.
• For Carthage Board of Education, incumbent Lee Elliff Pound received 590 votes and Michael Goolsby received 532 votes to hold on to their seats against Sheila Von Holten who tallied 300 votes.
Incumbents also captured two of the three contested races for Carthage City Council. The third contested race was won by a former council member.
• Kirby Newport held on to his Ward 1 seat with a 39-28 win over Trevor Smith.
• John Studebaker held on to his Ward 3 seat by beating Dustin Blankenship 44-38.
• Former council member Lee Carlson tallied 154 votes to beat out Dick Fanning, who had 118 votes, in the race for the Ward 4 seat being vacated by John Cooper.
All other races were uncontested. Jason T.A. Shelfer will serve in the Ward 5 seat while Donald McLaughlin and Larry Quinn Chapin are already serving their terms in their respective Ward 2 seats.
Joplin bond squeaker
Jasper County Clerk Bonnie Earl said across Jasper County, approximately 12.42 percent of the 72,823 voters cast ballots in the various municipal elections.
Every city and town in the county had an election on Tuesday.
By far, the election that drew the most attention and turnout was the $62 million Joplin school bond issue, and that race turned into a squeaker.
Several school and Joplin city officials were at the Jasper County Courthouse to see how that race would end up.
Several of those in Carthage started receiving word from Neosho that the bond issue had received more than 60 percent of the vote there.
Then Earl brought out the numbers for Jasper County and sent officials and reporters alike scrambling for their calculators.
The issue, which needed a 57.14 percent majority to pass, received only 55.9 percent of the vote in the part of Joplin in Jasper County.
The tally was 3,656 in favor and 2,884 against, but when you added in the 1,326 yes votes and 771 no votes from the Newton County part of the district, the race was close.
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With a total of 4,982 yes votes and 3,655 no votes, Joplin High School Principal Kerry Sachetta figured that the bond issue passed by only 45 votes out of 8,637 cast.
The measure received 57.68 percent of the vote, just over the 57.14 percent needed to pass.
The bond issue, which will raise property taxes by 35 cents per $100 of assessed valuation for Joplin school district residents and businesses only, will help fund a $185 million program to rebuild from the May 22, 2011 tornado.