Lake County primary ballot is finalized

LAKE COUNTY – With the ballot for the August primary election finalized, election season in Lake County is drawing near.

Many candidates will face their first test during the primary election on Tuesday, Aug. 5, before moving on to the general election in November.

State Rep. Jon Bumstead, R-Newaygo, will face no in-party opposition in the primary. Bumstead was elected in 2010 to represent the 100th District. He is chair of the Natural Resources Subcommittee and services on the House Appropriations Committee.

Democratic candidates Mark Edmund Balcom, of Hesperia, and Bill Valko, of Luther, will face off in the primary election for a chance to represent the 100th District for a two-year term.

Republican Bill Huizenga, of Zeeland, and Democrat Dean Vanderstelt, of Spring Lake, will run unopposed in the primary and will compete against each other in November to represent Michigan’s 2nd District in Congress.

State Sen. Darwin Booher, R-Evart, will face no in-party competition during the primary, but will compete with Democratic candidate Glenn Lottie, of Brethren, in the general election to be the next state senator for Michigan’s 35th District.

U.S. Sen. Carl Levin, D-Detroit, will not seek reelection and each party has only one candidate listed for his seat in the August primary. Republican Terri Lynn Land, of Grandville, and Democrat Gary Peters, of Bloomfield Township, will run for their party’s nomination and the chance to win a six-year term in the Senate.

Four candidates – Irons resident Craig Cooper, Ludingtona resident David Glancy, Susan Sniegowski and Paul Spaniola – will run in the primary election to become the 51st Circuit Court Judge. The two candidates with the most votes after the primary will compete against each other for the six-year term in November.

Voters will see two major proposals on the ballot. Proposal 14-1 is a statewide ballot initiative, and an amendment that seeks to reduce state use tax. If adopted by the Michigan Legislature, the proposal would require the Local Community Stabilization Authority to give funding to local governments, designated for police safety, fire protection and other local services.

Additionally, the amount of state use tax dedicated to aiding local school districts would be raised. Now that businesses in Michigan no longer have to pay property taxes, which previously served as sources of revenue for local governments, Michigan voters are encouraged by local officials to approve the proposal so that funding can be maintained.

In Lake County, voters will be faced with a library millage proposal in the August election. If approved, the 0.25-mill millage would provide all Lake County libraries with approximately $133,280 within the first of five years. Dispersed to the libraries on a per-capita basis, the funding will be dedicated to operational expenses.