Transit wins, Vance loses in Island County primary

Island County voters likely approved a measure to boost funding for Island Transit by increasing sales tax.

The ballot measure was passing by a healthy margin after the Island County Auditor’s Office released the first count of Tuesday’s primary election. A total of 12,465 ballots were cast in favor while 10,332 were in opposition. That’s 55 percent to 45 percent.

Island Transit Director Martha Rose was thrilled.

“Some people obviously approve of transit and don’t want the services cut. Which is great,” she said.

The measure will increase sales tax by three-tenths of 1 percent.

In the race for an Oak Harbor City Council seat, candidate Mel Vance may be the odd man out. Vance is coming in last in the three-way race.

Scott Dudley won the most votes so far with 1,523 ballots cast in his favor, which is 54 percent. Gerry Oliver has 774 votes, or 27 percent. Vance has 524 votes, which is 19 percent. If the results hold, Dudley and Oliver will go on to the general election.

The Auditor’s Office received 22,886 ballots by Tuesday. All but an estimated 2,000 of those ballots were counted in the first tabulation.

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