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Stadium too close to call

It’s a nail-biter for stadium boosters.

An early count by the Island County Auditor Tuesday night did not look good for the $6.5 million Memorial Stadium bond issue, but a second count of the night brought the issue a full 4 percentage points closer to passing by the required 60 percent supermajority.

As it stood at 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, the stadium bond issue had 2,226 votes in favor and 1,627 votes against. That’s nearly a 58 percent approval rating.

School Superintendent Rick Schulte said he’s hopeful that the bond will pass in the end. He noted that only about a third of the vote has been counted.

“There’s still a lot of room for a swing,” he said. But even at 58 percent, Schulte said that it’s the most positive response for a stadium bond that he’s seen from the community during his years in Oak Harbor.

“We had a very broad array of supporters with an amazing level of enthusiasm,” he said.

If it passes, the bond will fund a new stadium with artificial surface and covered seating, as well as other athletic facilities at Oak Harbor High School.

In the unusually hot race for hospital commissioner, Kristy Lang Miller has taken a sizable lead over challenger David Marshall. She has 4,247 votes to his 2,424.

The closest race in the county is for a Coupeville school board position. Incumbent Mitchell Howard is losing to Cindy Van Dyk. She has 689 votes and he has 611.

In Oak Harbor, there are two contested school board races. Incumbent Gary Wallin is winning with 2,384 votes while challenger Bill Burnett has just 1,101 votes.

Corey Johnson is winning over Brien Lillquist, by 2,681 to 773, in the race for an open Oak Harbor school board seat.

In the only contested seat for the Oak Harbor City Council, newcomer Jeffrey Kelly is losing, but still won a lot of votes in his minimalist campaign against incumbent Councilwoman Sheilah Crider. She has 874 votes to his 685.

The incumbent North Whidbey Fire and Rescue commissioner is winning over his rival. T.J Lamont has 1,095 votes and Jason Lamar has 761.

In the race for the open seat on the North Whidbey Park and Recreation commission, Robert Wilson has 1,795 votes and Chuck Niedzialkowski has 1,276.

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