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Weber County voters pick mix of newcomers, incumbents in city elections

By Tim Vandenack - | Nov 22, 2023

Photos supplied

This image shows the preliminary winners in the city council races in Roy, West Haven and North Ogden, Weber County's three largest cities outside of Ogden. The winners in the Roy race, left to right in the top row, are Ann Jackson, Joe Paul and Bryon Saxton. The winners in West Haven, left to right in the middle row, are Carrie Call, Nina Morse and Kim Dixon. The winners in North Ogden, left to right in the bottom row, are Christina Watson, Ryan Barker and Chris Pulver.

OGDEN — Voters in cities across Weber County selected a combination of newcomers and incumbents to lead their locales, with a seeming mix of factors motivating balloting.

In West Haven, voters tabbed the three incumbents — Carrie Call, Nina Morse and Kim Dixon — to remain in the three seats up for grabs in Tuesday’s voting, according to unofficial totals.

They were first elected four years ago based on their calls to help manage runaway expansion in the fast-growing city, Morse said, and with the development a continuing concern “that’s why we were elected yesterday.”

As new City Council members, they helped usher in change to the city’s zoning regulations and general plan to help rein in growth, “a hot-button issue,” she noted. Voters rewarded the efforts, Morse thinks, by tabbing them for new terms.

In North Ogden, voters picked two newcomers — Christina Watson and Chris Pulver — along with incumbent Ryan Barker. The top vote-getter was Watson, seeking public office for the first time, and she thinks her upbeat messaging while campaigning figured in the results.

Tim Vandenack, Standard-Examiner file photo

Election workers help process ballots at the Weber Center polling place in Ogden on Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2023. Pictured, from left, are Amy Sorensen and Dennis Hadley.

“I think that the community deserves someone who loves the city and has optimism and hope for its future success,” Watson said. Her focus on the council will be promoting a safe, family-friendly atmosphere in North Ogden and trying to promote tighter bonds among the citizenry.

In Washington Terrace, voters selected three newcomers to the City Council there, including Cheryl Parkinson, the top vote-getter. She’s a retired teacher from Roosevelt Elementary in the city and thinks the connections she made over the years there with kids and parents figured in her success.

Her focus will be keeping Washington Terrace a place that appeals to continuing generations of residents. At a more basic level, she’ll keep close tabs on city spending. “People are concerned about taxes,” she said.

The other newcomers elected to the Washington Terrace City Council in addition to Parkinson were Zunayid Zishan and Michael Thomas.

The results here are preliminary but reflect the vast majority of ballots cast, 99% of them, according to Weber County Clerk/Auditor Ricky Hatch. They are to be canvassed on Dec. 5, when they become official.

Here’s a look at preliminary results from the vote totals released Wednesday evening in municipal elections around Weber County:

Roy: Roy voters picked two incumbents and a third candidate who previously served on the City Council to fill the three City Council spots on the ballot.

Leading the way was incumbent Ann Jackson with 3,202 votes, 25.3% of the total, followed by incumbent Joe Paul, 2,412 votes, 19.1%. Third was Bryon Saxton with 2,208 votes, 17.5%. He previously served on the City Council, though he’s not on the body currently.

Next, out of contention for seats, were Benjamin Pearson, Jeremy Thompson and Claude Payne. Incumbent Diane Wilson’s post was up for election this cycle, but she didn’t run.

One of the big issues in the Roy race was development plans along the busy 1900 West corridor in the city’s main commercial area. The City Council has approved a mixed-use zoning schematic for the area that allows for high-density housing, like apartments, and commercial development. Some of the hopefuls don’t like the idea of apartments along the core 1900 West corridor, including Saxton, and the issue got a lot of attention.

Jackson and Paul voted for the mixed-used zoning plan.

West Haven: The three winning incumbents for the three spots up for grabs and and their vote tallies were Carrie Call, 1,604 votes, 24%; Nina Morse, 1,281 votes, 19.2%; and Kim Dixon, 1,253 votes, 18.7%.

Next, out of contention, came Clarence Kelley, Jim McGregor and Sharon Hilton.

North Ogden: The trio winning the three seats that came open were Christina Watson with 2,550 votes, 21.7%; incumbent Ryan Barker with 2,309 votes, 19.6%; and Chris Pulver with 2,262 votes, 19.2%.

Next, out of contention, came Phil Swanson, an incumbent, along with Tim Billings and Merill Sunderland.

South Ogden: The winners for three seats on the South Ogden City Council were Doug Stephens with 1,377 votes, 19.8%; Jeremy Howe with 1,373 votes, 19.8%; and incumbent Jeanette Smyth with 1,303 votes, 18.8%. Stephens previously served on the Ogden City Council before moving to South Ogden.

Out of contention were Sallee Orr, an incumbent who waged a write-in campaign after missing the deadline to file her candidacy, followed by Eric Lee.

Here are the winners in contested local races in Weber County’s other smaller locales:

Harrisville: Three City Council seats were up for grabs and the winners were newcomer Karen Taylor-Fawcett and incumbents Grover Wilhelmsen and Blair Christensen.

Hooper: Two City Council spots were open and the winners were incumbent Ryan Hill and Dale Fowers, the current Hooper mayor.

Huntsville: Two Town Council spots came open and the winners were incumbent Bruce Ahlstrom and Lewis Johnson. Lee Primm came in third just two votes behind Johnson. The close finish between Johnson and Primm notwithstanding, the difference is not less than 0.25%, the trigger for potential recounts, according to state law.

Marriott-Slaterville: Two vied for the West District City Council spot in the city and incumbent Rob Smout won.

Plain City: Three City Council spots were open and the winners were Jan Wilson, Adam Favero and incumbent Rachael Beal.

Pleasant View: Three incumbents won the three City Council spots that came open: Ann Arrington, Sara Urry and Dave Marriott.

Riverdale: Three City Council spots were up for grabs and the winners were Michael Richter and incumbents Alan Arnold and Steve Hilton. Karina Merrill trailed Hilton in fourth place by just two votes and Hilton trailed Arnold by just one vote. State law would allow for a recount in the Riverdale race given the slight difference in votes going to Arnold, Hilton and Merrill — less than 0.25% of total votes cast. But it would be up to one of the candidates to ask for such action, Hatch said, and he’s not received such a request. The candidate or candidates would have to cover the cost of a recount.

Uintah: Two City Council spots were on the ballot and the winners were Daniel Combe and Robert Guiller.

Washington Terrace: Three City Council spots were to be filled and the winners were Cheryl Parkinson, Zunayid Zishan and Michael Thomas.


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