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The Carthage Press
  • Wastewater bond passes, recorder race decided by 1.5 percent

  • Carthage voters overwhelmingly approved a bond issue to renovate the Carthage Water & Electric Plant's wastewater treatment plant, and the race for Jasper County Recorder came down to the wire in an exciting election night at the historic Jasper County Courthouse.
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  • Carthage voters overwhelmingly approved a bond issue to renovate the Carthage Water & Electric Plant's wastewater treatment plant, and the race for Jasper County Recorder came down to the wire in an exciting election night at the historic Jasper County Courthouse.
    By an 81-percent-to-19-percent margin, Carthage voters gave CW&EP permission to finance $6 million in improvements to the treatment plant on the northwest corner of town that will improve the quality of water coming from the plant and increase its capacity somewhat.
    The final vote count on the question was 1,513 yes to 354 no.
    City and utility officials who were waiting at the courthouse were pleased when County Clerk Bonnie Earl brought the results out.
    "I think that's one more example of Carthage voters stepping up when they need to," said Mayor Mike Harris. "It is important and it will save the city a lot of money."
    The vote allowed CW&EP to seek $3 million in grants from a state watershed protection program and $3 million in low-interest financing from a state revolving fund to pay for the improvements which will primarily be geared to meeting new federal limits on the amount of ammonia in treated waste water released from treatment plants that are expected to be coming in the next few years.
    Utility officials had said the improvements would have to be made no matter the outcome of the vote, but the vote would allow the city to finance them at a cheaper cost.
    Chuck Bryant, electrical supervisor for CW&EP, said thank you to the voters for their confidence in the utility.
    "We really appreciate this opportunity to do our work for the citizens of this community, and we're happy," Bryant said. "It's a testament to the voters of Carthage to see an opportunity for us to save money, and this is simply a vote to finance this project. They understood that and now we're going to go full steam ahead on this project and figure out a way to make sure we bring as much of that $3 million as we can here to Carthage as we can."
    County races
    The three-way race for the Republican nomination for recorder of deeds was a nail-biter throughout the evening.
    The race quickly became a two-person contest as Doris Tatum and Charlotte Pickering pulled ahead in early returns.
    The first two sets of partial returns, with 15 and 30 precincts counted had Tatum with about 44 percent, Pickering with 40 or 41 percent and Ron Hill with 13 or 14 percent.
    Pickering came back in the final results to claim the race by fewer than 200 votes. Pickering had 5,212 votes, or 43.85 percent; Tatum had 5,030 votes, or 42.32 percent; and Ron Hill had 1,643 votes, or 13.82 percent.
    Pickering's margin of victory was just over 1.5 percent.
    Page 2 of 2 - In the other county-wide races:
    • John Bartosh defeated Jim Lessy for the Republican nod for presiding county commissioner 7,676 to 4,180.
    • Stephen Holt defeated David Crocker in the race for collector 8,961 to 3,364.
    • John Nicholas defeated Mike Roberts for Associate Circuit Judge Division 4 by a 6,381 to 5,348 count.
    • Joe Hensley defeated Nate Dally for Associate Circuit Judge in Division 5, 7,833 to 4,517.
    Running unopposed for in county races were Stephen Carlton for Division 6 judge; Marilyn Baugh for county clerk; Melissa Holcomb for circuit court clerk; Dean Dankelson for prosecutor and Richard Webster for auditor.
    None of these candidates face challenges from any other party in the November general election, so they will likely win these offices at that time.

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