By Bob Balgemann, REPORTER

 It’s being said that the likes of Tuesday’s Presidential Election has never been seen before and likely won’t be seen again. Whatever the case, the battle between Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump for President of the United States is expected to produce big numbers at polling places across the Nation. There are enough other important races to demand that voters turn out between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Competitions for six four-year terms on the Boone County Board and a state House seat, along with four referendums, are among the various considerations on the Nov. 8 ballot. When these results are determined, qualifying for a number of positions in the Village of Poplar Grove Government will begin in mid-December for the 2017 Election. Other local elections will be on tap next year as well.

First things first, there are four candidates for President. Teams are made up of Clinton and her Vice Presidential running mate, Timothy Kaine; Trump and Michael Pence; Libertarian Gary Johnson and Bill Weld; and Green Party candidate Jill Stein along with Ajamu Baraka. Incumbent U.S. Senator Mark Kirk, a Republican, is being opposed by Democrat Tammy Duckworth, Libertarian Kenton McMillen, and Scott Summers, representing the Green Party. There also is a race for State Comptroller. Republican Leslie Munger was appointed to that position following the death of the office holder, Judy Baar Topinga, also a Republican, on Dec. 10, 2014. The other candidates are Democrat Susana Mendoza, currently the Chicago City Clerk; Libertarian Claire Ball, and Green Party hopeful Tim Curtin. In the competition for the State House District 69 seat, incumbent Republican Rep. Joe Sosnowski from Rockford has drawn opposition from Democrat Angelique Bodine of Poplar Grove. District 69 takes in the vast majority of Boone County and the Roscoe, Rockton, and South Beloit areas of Winnebago County.

County Board Seats

There will be competition in two of the three County Board Districts. In District Two, longtime incumbent Cathy Ward and newcomer Dr. Bernard O’Malley, both Republicans, are all but assured of winning four-year terms. No one is running on behalf of the Democratic Party, Green Party, or the Libertarian Party. There aren’t any known write-in candidates, either. There are contests in Districts One and Three, with a new face guaranteed to be elected in both of them. Incumbent Board Member Denny Ellingson, who is concluding his first term, and former Board Member Marshall Newhouse, both Republicans, are running in District One along with Independent William Randall IV. Two four-year terms are at stake. In District Three, former Board Member Marion Thornberry, a Republican, along with newcomer Carl Larson, also a Republican, and appointee Jessica Muellner, a Democrat, are campaigning for three four-year terms. Muellner was appointed to replace Democrat Craig Schultz, who died in office May 12. Incumbent Kenny Freeman is not running again. Circuit Judge Rob Tobin of Boone County is up for retention as are 17th Circuit Judges Kathryn Zenoff and Janet Holmgren. Unopposed candidates include State Senator Dave Syverson, R-Rockford, who has served in the Senate for more than 20 years; incumbent state Representative Bob Pritchard, R-Sycamore; incumbent Republican U.S. Representative Adam Kinzinger; incumbent Circuit Court Clerk Linda Anderson, a Republican; and incumbent Coroner Rebecca Wigget, also a Republican. Republican Tricia Smith is the only candidate for State’s Attorney, having defeated incumbent Michelle Courier in the March GOP Primary Election. No one else has qualified to run for that four-year term.

Four Referendums

In Poplar Grove, voters will decide if future Village Clerks are appointed or continue to be elected. Incumbent Martha Suhr has said she’s leaning toward retirement but will wait until after Tuesday’s election to decide. She has been Clerk for the past 32 years. One of two Statewide Referendums has to do with “reducing the corrupting influence of money on our political system by prohibiting politicians from taking campaign money from the special interests they regulate …”   The other Referendum asks voters if they support “fixing our state failed legislative system in Illinois by imposing term limits and requiring redistricting reform at the State and Federal level?” Only a small portion of Hononegah Community Unit School District 207 lies in Boone County. Voters are being asked if they support issuing $44 million in Bonds for a variety of building projects.

Local Elections in 2017

A change in the face of the Poplar Grove Village Board is assured in the April 2017 Municipal Election. Incumbent Village President John Neitzel and incumbent Trustees Don Bawden and Judi Zangs are not seeking re-election. So far, sitting Trustee Owen Costanza has announced for Village President with a slate that includes Village Board candidates Eric Miller, Sophia Ramdass, and Erin Walsh. Together, they fill the four upcoming vacancies. The Village Clerk’s four-year term also is expiring. Filing of nominating petitions will begin Dec. 12 and conclude at 4:30 p.m. Dec. 19. Other 2017 elections will take place in the City of Belvidere, the Villages of Caledonia, Capron, and Timberlane, School Districts 100 and 200 and each of the nine Townships.

In Belvidere, the terms of Mayor, City Clerk, City Treasurer, and four Aldermen will be expiring. Terms of all of Township Supervisors, Road Commissioners, Clerks, and Board Members will be expiring. School Districts 100 and 200 each will be electing four Board Members. Among them will be the sitting Board Presidents, Robert Torbert in District 100 and Matt Ellingson in District 200. Historic Election Boone County Election 2Boone County Election 3

Each District has a new, appointed Superintendent. 


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