The Republican field for at-large Jackson County Council seats has been cut in half.
John Nolting of Brownstown, Ann Cain of Seymour and Dave Hall of Norman received the most votes in Tuesday’s primary election. Nolting led the way with 5,132 votes, while Cain received 3,403, and Hall garnered 3,220.
Other Republican candidates receiving votes included the only incumbent, Joseph “Joe” Bowman of Seymour, with 2,854, Fred Gill of Seymour with 2,496 and Ralph Collins of Medora with 1,419.
The three winners will move on to face Democrats Steve Ritter of Norman and Kathy Schafstall of Seymour in the Nov. 8 general election, when three people ultimately will be elected to the council. The other four council members each represent a county district.
In Tuesday’s election, Schafstall received 2,140 votes, and Ritter finished with 1,454.
Nolting said he felt one thing helped him earn the most votes — name recognition. That comes from having worked for more than 40 years managing supermarkets in the area and currently serving his second term as president of the Brownstown Town Council.
“I worked in Seymour a long time, and a lot of people knew me, and I grew up in Seymour,” Nolting said. “Then I think, too, being on the town board here in Brownstown, my name gets out there like that.”
To the people who voted for him, Nolting said he appreciates the support. This was his first time running for a county office.
“Honestly, I didn’t dream I would carry it that strong,” he said of receiving the most votes. “I thought there were six good candidates there, and I didn’t know how that was going to shake out.”
Cain is a political newcomer, but she said she learned a lot while working for 10 years as a business owner, including handling budgets and accounts receivables and payable. She currently is a real estate broker.
Hall, an insurance agent and bail bondsman, said he credited three things to his primary election success.
“I’ve got a good group of friends that really helped me out with the election, and I put out a few signs, and I stood at the polls,” he said.
Hall, who currently serves on the Owen Township Advisory Board, said he will continue to work to earn people’s votes again in the fall.
“It was a big deal to get through the primary with such a stiff Republican race,” he said. “But this fall, there are two great Democrats running, and I’m going to work a lot harder than I did this spring.”
The county council has the ultimate decision-making power regarding fiscal affairs. It has the authority to view or review fiscal matters, determine proper policy and set priorities for the allocation and expenditure of county funds.
This year in Jackson County, each member’s salary is $6,910.44.
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Jackson County Council at-large seats
Joseph “Joe” Bowman (I);2,854