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Monday, October 16, 2017

2017 city election filing period opens this Thursday

By Jason Stuart

Ranger-Review Staff Writer

The candidate filing period for this November’s Glendive city election opens this Thursday, April 20.

Six city positions will be up for election this November. Four out of the eight city council positions will be voted on, as will the offices of mayor and city judge.

Mayor Jerry Jimison is now in his 16th year in office, having first took office in 2002. Jimison’s four full terms are far and away the longest tenure of any mayor in Glendive’s history.

Whether or not Jimison will run for a fifth term remains to be seen. When asked about it on Tuesday, he said he had not made up his mind.

“At this time, I’m not sure ... depending on family health concerns,” Jimison said when asked if he intended to run again. Jimison’s wife has been fighting an ongoing battle with cancer the last several years.

Jimison went uncontested in the last city election in 2013.

Half of the city council is also up for election this November, with one representative up for election from each of the city’s four wards.

Councilman Rhett Coon, who represents Ward 4, is the longest-tenured of the council members up for election this year. Coon is wrapping up his second term on the council.

Like Jimison — who is his father-in-law — Coon said he has not yet made a decision on running again.

“I guess right now, I’m undecided, mainly because I haven’t thought about it yet,” Coon said. “It’s amazing how fast four years go by.”

Coon handily won re-election in the 2013 city election.

The remaining three council members up for election this November are all in their first term in office.

Councilwoman Betsey Hedrick, who represents Ward 1, also said she has not yet made up her mind on whether she will seek election to a second term.

“I’ve been thinking about it, but I haven’t made a decision about it yet,” Hedrick said. “I haven’t ruled it out, but I haven’t committed yet.”

Hedrick narrowly won election to the council in 2013 by five votes.

Councilman Doug Baker, who represents Ward 3, said he definitely intends to run again for a second term.

“I’ve still got a few things I’d like to see done, a few projects that have gotten started through to completion,” Baker said.

Baker was unopposed in the 2013 election.

Councilwoman Avis Anderson, who represents Ward 2, could not be reached prior to press time as she was confirmed by other city council members to be out of town this week. Anderson is completing the term of former council member Kevin Peña, who resigned from the council last year after moving outside of the city limits. Anderson was appointed to fill out the remainder of Peña’s term last summer.

The final city office up for election this year is city judge, a post currently held by Kerry Burman. Burman ran unopposed in the last city election in 2013.

One thing any resident who is considering filing for city council should keep in mind is that the boundary lines between Ward 1 and Ward 3 have been officially adjusted for this year’s election. 

The new boundary draws more of the Prospect Heights neighborhood into Ward 1. The previous boundary between the two wards was set at Allard Street. The new boundary is to the north at Clay Street. All residents living in the area between Allard and Clay streets are now in Ward 1 and so would file to represent that ward. The boundary line between Ward 2 and Ward 4 was also adjusted, but that adjustment was purely for continuity and affected no voters. 

The city election filing period closes on June 19.

Reach Jason Stuart at rrreporter@rangerreview.com.

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