After a third round of ballot-counting by the Okanogan County auditor’s office was completed on Monday (Nov. 10), a proposed levy increase to support construction of a new fire station in Winthrop for Okanogan County Fire District 6 was still being defeated, by 999 no votes (54 percent) to 851 yes votes (46 percent).
The auditor’s office reported that 10,843 ballots countywide had been counted and an estimated 1,754 remained to be counted. The next release of vote totals will be on Friday (Nov. 14).
The fire district levy proposal has consistently trailed by about the same margin since the first ballot results were released on Nov. 4.
In the only two contested county offices on the general election ballot, Dave Rodriguez held a substantial lead over Gary V. Reams for the new position of elected county coroner, while incumbent county assessor Scott Furman also held a comfortable lead over challenger Les V. Stokes.
Rodriguez drew 6,972 votes (73 percent) while Reams tallied 2,594 votes (27 percent) in the second round of ballot counting. Furman drew 6,263 votes (62 percent) to 3,759 (38 percent) for Stokes.
In the race to fill the District 1 seat on the Okanogan County Public Utility District board of commissioners, incumbent David Womack (4,024 votes, 45 percent) trailed challenger Scott Vejraska (4,853 votes, 55 percent). They are competing for a six-year term.
In other county races, running unopposed for four-year terms are County Auditor Laurie Thomas, Clerk Charleen Groomes, District 3 County Commissioner Jim DeTro, Prosecuting Attorney Karl Sloan, Sheriff Frank Rogers and Treasurer Leah Mc Cormack.
Okanogan County District Court judges Heidi Smith and Charles Short are also running unopposed to fill four-year terms.
In the state’s 12th Legislative District, representatives Brad Hawkins and Cary Condotta are running unopposed to fill two-year terms. Both represent the Methow Valley.
Clint Didier and Dan Newhouse, both Republicans, are vying to fill the 4th Congressional District seat vacated by the retirement of longtime Congressman Doc Hastings. While Newhouse narrowly led in district-wide returns as of Monday with 51 percent of the votes cast, Didier was polling more votes in Okanogan County.
Okanogan County voters were also bucking a couple of statewide trends. While Initiative 591, which would prohibit some firearms restrictions, was being defeated statewide, it was winning approval in Okanogan County. Conversely, while Okanogan County voters were rejecting Initiative 594, which would establish background checks for firearm sales, the initiative was being handily approved statewide.