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Incomplete Returns

Ford leads in Port of Klickitat race, Gookin ahead in council election

Perhaps because there were relatively few contested races on Klickitat County's general election ballot on Nov. 6, area voters turned out in relatively weak numbers to register their votes.

Only about 34.1 percent of the county's registered voters cast ballots, although that number will rise somewhat as absentee ballots trickle in over the next few days.

One of the key local races was for a seat on the Port of Klickitat Board of Commissioners. In unofficial results, challenger Rodger Ford was leading one-term incumbent Marc Harvey. Ford had an even 100-vote margin: 765 votes (53.3%) to Harvey's 665 votes (46.3%). An undetermined number of absentee ballots are yet to be counted.

At stake is a six-year term with the Port of Klickitat.

An important race for the city of White Salmon was for an open spot on the White Salmon City Council. In the Position 4 contest, small business owner Susan Gookin was running well ahead of Skyline Hospital employee Dennis Fisher. Gookin had 135 votes (59.7%) while Fisher tallied 90 votes (39.8%).

The winner will serve on the City Council for the next four years.

Elsewhere, Jack Korri was trailing incumbent Les Haarstad in the Lyle Fire District (District 4, Position 2) election. Haarstad had 128 votes against Korri's 75 votes.

Several school board races were up for grabs on Nov. 6. In the Lyle School District-Position 2 was a dead-heat. Three-term incumbent Tom Jellum had 243 votes, while newcomer Danny Smith, a Washington State University student, had 244 votes.

It was not as close for Lyle School District-Position 5, where challenger Scott Struck was ahead of incumbent Bob Eiesland by 50 votes. Struck led with 280 votes to 230 for Eiesland.

Eiesland has served four terms on the Lyle School District's board.

Trout Lake had two competitive school district races. In the election for Trout Lake School District-Position 2, SunDee Yarnell was ahead of David E. Woodruff. The unofficial count showed Yarnell leading with 121 votes to 97 votes for Woodruff.

For Position 3 on the Trout Lake School District, Denise Heard trailed Cheryl Mack by 70 votes. Incomplete returns showed Heard with 72 votes, while Mack tallied 142 votes.

County residents followed the statewide trends in voting on the five ballot measures. Klickitat County voted Yes on Initiative 747, Initiative 773, and Initiative 775, all of which appeared to be passing in Washington. (For statewide results on all the ballot measures, see chart below.)

Final results are expected to be available for next week's edition of The Enterprise

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