Local Election

McHenry County races take shape as candidates file for April 4 election

A number of contested municipal government races await voters in the April 4 consolidated election.

Voters on that day will elect their representatives to local taxing bodies including municipalities, townships and their school, park, fire, library and community college districts.

Monday was the last day for candidates for local governments to file their petitions at their local government offices or, in the case of school districts, with the McHenry County Clerk’s Office. Apart from school districts, local governments have until Jan. 26 to certify their candidates with the county. Reports available as of late Monday showed only a handful of local school districts having contested races, although that may change.

The following is a partial list of the races that voters will have to decide.

In Crystal Lake, incumbent City Council members Cameron Hubbard, Haig Haleblian and Ralph Dawson will be running against challengers Sally Munn and Stefano Liparoto for three open seats. City Clerk Nick Kachiroubas is running unopposed.

In neighboring Lakewood, the newly formed Lakewood Tax-Fighter Party is running a slate to gain a majority on the Village Board and its presidency. 

Trustee Paul Serwatka, who founded the party, is running against Trustee Ken Santowski for village president. Erin Smith is not seeking re-election. Party members Philip Stephan, Richard Ritchie and Amy Fues Odom are running for three open trustee seats, as are newcomer John Schrauf and incumbent Eugene Furey. Incumbents Beverly Thomas and Jeff Iden are not seeking re-election.

The race for Hebron village president is a five-way contest in the wake of the embattled incumbent, John Jacobson, facing drug and gun charges after his latest crack cocaine arrest. Jacobson, who is seeking a second term, faces challenges from Trustees Mark Shepherd and Mark Mogan, former Village President Frank Beatty and challenger Kimberly Martinez.

Trustees Peter Canfield and Susan Ritzert will run to hold their seats, and Elizabeth Grana will run to fill the third seat that is up for election.

Woodstock voters face a four-way race for mayor. Incumbent Brian Sager faces challengers Gregg Hanson, Allen Stebbins and McHenry County Board member Michael Rein. On the City Council, incumbents Joe Starzynski and Mike Turner face challengers Scott Gessert, Jim Prindiville, Michael Stanard and Gordon Tebo for three open seats. Member RB Thompson is not seeking re-election.

Marengo has a three-way race for mayor, pitting incumbent Don Lockhart against challengers John Arient and John Koziol. Voters in Ward 1 will choose between incumbent Nicole DeBoer and Raymond Knake, and Ward 4 voters will choose between incumbent Dennis Hammortree and James Edward Regelin.

City Clerk Constance Boxleitner is running unopposed, as are Ward 2 incumbent Steven Mortensen and Ward 3 incumbent Matt Keenum. In Ward 1, appointee Michael Miller is running unopposed for a two-year unexpired term.

In Harvard, Mayor Michael Kelly has filed for re-election, as has City Clerk Lori Moller. Voters in the 1st Ward will choose between incumbent Charles Marzahl and challengers Jay Schulz and Lisa Haderlein. In the 3rd Ward, incumbent Raul Meza is running unopposed for a four-year term, while candidates Tammy Herrera and Robert O”Halloran are running for a two-year unexpired term. Incumbent Carol Opper is running unopposed in the 4th Ward, while no candidate has filed for the 2nd Ward.

McHenry voters will decide a mayoral race between candidates Wayne Jett, a local business owner, and former mayor Steve Cuda, an attorney. Mayor Sue Low is stepping down after four terms. Incumbent Victor Santi faces challenger Michael Coveny in Ward 1, while incumbent Jeffrey Schaefer is running in Ward 3 and candidate Chad Mihevc is running in Ward 5. 

Lake in the Hills Village President Paul Mulcahy faces a challenge by Trustee Russ Ruzanski. Incumbent Trustees Bob Huckins and Stephen Harlfinger face challengers Bill Dustin and Thaddeus Lewis for three open seats. No one has filed for the open village clerk seat.

Voters in Algonquin will decide contested races for three open seats. Incumbents Brian Dianis, Robert Smith and Jerrold Glowgowski are running, and face challengers from candidates Laura Brehmer, Greg Ligman and Janis Jasper. Village President John Schmitt and Village Clerk Gerald Kautz are running unopposed.

Cary voters will have contested races for both mayor and their village trustees. Mayor Mark Kownick faces a challenge from Trustee Jim Cosler. Incumbent Trustees Rick Dudek and Jeffery Kraus are running, as are challengers Christine Betz, Jennifer Weinhammer, Christopher Naatz and Joe Tournier for three open seats.

Voters in several municipalities will not have contested races to decide.

In Huntley, Village President Charles Sass is running unopposed, as are Trustees Ronda Goldman, John Piwko and JR Westberg. Fox River Grove Village President Robert Nunamaker is running unopposed, as are Trustees Andrew Migdal and Suzanne Blohm. Candidate Jacob Fleischmann is running for a third open seat.

• Reporters Nate Linhart and Hannah Prokop contributed to this story.

EDITOR'S NOTE: This story has since been changed to state that Lakewood candidate Eugene Furey is an incumbent.

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