Editor’s note: On Oct. 7 the canvass board counted absentee and other ballots. There is no change in the unofficial election results. Bryan Zak kept his lead and is elected mayor. Shelly Erickson and Tom Stroozas were elected to Homer City Council. Proposition 1 failed.
In unofficial results for municipal elections, Homer City Council member Bryan Zak has won election for Homer mayor, defeating fellow council member David Lewis. Zak won with 594 votes to Lewis with 520 votes. Absentee, special needs and questioned ballots remain to be counted, and with a 74-vote margin, it’s possible the election could go to Lewis.
In the two-seat Homer City Council race, former Homer Advisory Planning Commissioner and business owner Shelly Erickson easily won election, with 52 percent or 922 votes. Current planning commissioner Tom Stroozas came in second, with 36 percent or 639 votes. Kimberly Ketter came in third with 11 percent or 181 votes. Erickson and Stroozas will fill the seats now held by Zak and Gus VanDyke. Both chose not to run for re-election.
In Homer Proposition 1, voters spiked a proposal to borrow up to $12 million to build a new Homer Police station and pay for it with a six-month, 0.65-percent sales tax increase. The “no” votes won with 53 percent or 607 votes to “yes” with 47 percent or 540 votes.
Zak ended a sunny election day waving signs on Pioneer Avenue in front of WKFL Park with supporters.
“I greatly appreciate the support,” Zak said. “I’m looking forward to working with all the voters.”
Lewis was philosophical in his loss. He had said earlier this would be his last term on the council, with one year to go. If he had been elected mayor, his public service would have been extended another year. If he loses the mayor’s race, he will remain on the council until the end of his term in October 2017.
“I just want to thank everybody who supported me,” he said.
Ken Castner, chair of the Public Safety Building Committee, said he was disappointed with the defeat of the police station bond.
“I did my best,” he said. “I feel terrible for the people who work there.”
Erickson is a lifelong, third-generation Homer resident and owner of several businesses while Stroozas is a more recent resident, but also with business experience. Ketter ran under the cloud of a recent felony driving under the influence conviction, but also openly confronted the challenges of her substance abuse.
The Homer Canvass Board will meet at 1 p.m. Friday to count the remaining ballot and certify the results. The mayor and new council members will be sworn in at the council meeting on Monday.
Michael Armstrong can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In unofficial tallies, here are the results for the city of Homer elections, with all precincts counted, but not absentee, special needs or questioned ballot votes:
Bryan Zak, 52 percent, 594 votes
David Lewis, 46 percent, 520 votes
Shelly Erickson, 52 percent, 922 votes
Tom Stroozas, 36 percent, 639 votes
Kimberly Ketter, 11 percent, 181 votes
Prop 1: Homer Police Station Bond
No, 53 percent, 607 votes
Yes, 47 percent, 540 votes