Council elections: Sukke, Schurman, Boeke, Wenner re-elected; Bly to replace Voss
Four incumbents won re-election — two of them running unopposed — and the fifth seat up for grabs on the Detroit Lakes City Council went to a relative newcomer on the local government scene: Natalie Bly.
"I'm so excited!" said Bly upon hearing that she had won her bid for one of two open alderman-at-large seats in her first try at running for public office.
"I'd like to thank all the voters who showed up at the polls this year and voted for Detroit Lakes," she added. "I'm excited to share all my energy with the city of Detroit Lakes and continue to add to the vibrancy of this community.
"I loved meeting all of Detroit Lakes, and thank you to all of those who opened their doors to me and invited me into their homes."
Bly received 1,772 votes, or 28 percent of the vote — the highest of all four candidates for the alderman at large position. She will replace Barb Voss, who opted not to seek re-election this fall.
Madalyn Sukke, who was seeking re-election to her alderman-at-large seat on the council, received the second highest number of votes with 1,702 (27 percent), while Beth Pridday received 1,408 votes (22.3 percent) and John C. Thorpe, 1,396 (22.2 percent).
"I'm certainly gratified," said Sukke, noting the closeness of the vote among all four candidates. "I'm happy that the voters decided I should do another four years. I'm very pleased.
"Good happened for the city all around," Sukke added. "I'm grateful to see that the voters decided that the way to go for a police station was the sales tax, I think that spreads (the cost) out amongst all of us."
Sukke was also pleased by the positive outcome of the school bond referendum, adding, "I think that the voters did a great thing in coming together" for the betterment of the community.
Ward 2 Alderman Jay Schurman was also victorious in his bid for re-election, receiving 677 votes (62 percent) to 412 votes (38 percent) for his challenger, Rick Johnson.
"It feels great!" Schurman said, adding that he was particularly happy to hear the city's referendum for a local option sales tax to build a new police department had passed as well.
"It feels good to be able to continue to be a part of that process," he said, noting that the State Legislature will now have the final say on the tax, as special legislation must be passed in order to implement it.
Running unopposed, Ward 1 Alderman Dan Wenner and Ward 3 Alderman Matt Boeke also won their bids for re-election, with Wenner receiving 882 votes and Boeke, 1,369 — which amounted to nearly 100 percent of the ballots cast in their respective wards, as only 6 write-ins were cast in Ward 1, and 11 write-ins for Ward 3.
Bly, Sukke, Schurman, Boeke and Wenner will each begin serving their 4-year terms on Jan. 1.