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Early voting begins in 2 weeks for runoffs

LAPLACE — The Fall election season has entered Round 2.

Local voters decided on six of the seven contested St. John the Baptist Parish School Board races, largely electing incumbents to return to their roles when the four-year term starts again in 2019.

In District 11, none of the three declared candidates reached 50 percent, as incumbent Clarence Triche took in 46 percent of the turnout (601 votes), compared to 38 percent for Lisa Tregre-Wilder (492 votes) and 16 percent for Shondrell Perrilloux (203 votes).

That sets up a runoff election Dec. 8, for which early voting is only two weeks away.

Early voting runs from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Nov. 24 through Dec. 1 at the Voter’s Registration Office in LaPlace (1801 W. Airline Highway) and at the Voter’s Registration Office in Edgard (2393 Louisiana 18).

There is no early Voting Dec. 2 because it is a Sunday.

Also on the ballot Dec. 8 is the Secretary of State’s runoff election between Interim Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin and Gwen Collins-Greenup.

Statewide, Ardoin secured 298,652 votes, compared to Collins-Greenup’s 289,070. Each candidate’s Louisiana showing represented 20 percent of the turnout.

In St. John Parish, Collins-Greenup seized 5,697 votes (41 percent), compared to Ardoin’s 1,734 (13 percent). In fact, Renee Fontenot Free was the second leading voter getter in St. John Parish for Secretary of State with 2,475 votes (18 percent).

Incumbent Congressional candidates Cedric Richmond and Garret Graves, with Districts that divide St. John the Baptist Parish, each easily won reelection.

Richmond picked up 77 percent of the turnout in St. John and 81 percent statewide.

Graves picked up 58 percent of the turnout in St. John and 69 percent statewide.

Millage passes

In other local election news, St. John the Baptist Parish voters approved a 10-year, .48 millage renewal — earmarked to continue funding a Parishwide Mosquito Abatement District.

The money generated, estimated at $200,340 yearly, funds much of the District’s mosquito response and prevention efforts.

Parish water bill payers also kick in a monthly $2.75 service charge, which generates funds for mosquito control; however, 25 cents of that monthly fee is redirected to the parish’s animal control efforts.

Parish President Natalie Robottom said the millage funding is vital to public safety and health in St. John.

According to Robottom, the money generated from the millage and water bill fees is used to pay a professional services contract with St. John Mosquito Control, which services the parish from its Airport Road headquarters in Reserve.

According to unofficial numbers released by the Secretary of State’s office, 9,005 voters (66 percent) approved the renewal, compared to 4,671 voters (34 percent) against.

School Board

Debbie Schum topped incumbent Russ Wise in District 8 for the St. John the Baptist Parish School Board.

It represented the one challenge to the status quo approved by local voters, who overwhelmingly backed established leadership.

According to numbers Tuesday night provided by the Louisiana Secretary of State’s office, Schum collected 996 votes (65 percent), compared to 527 votes (35 percent) for Wise.

School Board members are term limited to three terms; however, according to the school district, that election stipulation was instituted in 2014. All sitting Board members were allowed to start at zero in 2014, meaning the 2018 election is only considered each incumbent’s second run for office.

Other St. John School Board results reported Tuesday included:

District 2

Albert “Ali” Burl III – 61 percent, 762 votes

Carl V. Monica – 39 percent, 496 votes

District 4

Patrick Sanders – 75 percent, 827 votes

Pearl Foreman – 25 percent, 283 votes

District 5

Clarissa “Reesce” Alvis – 30 percent, 277 votes

Sherry DeFrancesch – 70 percent, 644 votes

District 6

Keith Jones – 68 percent, 871 votes

Raven Warren – 32 percent, 412 votes

District 7

Corey Hutchinson – 42 percent, 389 votes

Phillip Johnson – 58 percent, 531 votes