Linn County: Two Supervisor Primaries
By Rick Smith, Reporter
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa Both seats up for election this year on the five-member Linn County Board of Supervisors will have primaries on June 3.
Three other county races up for a vote this year county attorney, treasurer and recorder attracted no challengers.
Only Democratic incumbents Jerry Vander Sanden, county attorney, Sharon Gonzalez, treasurer, and Joan McCalmant, recorder, filed nomination papers by the deadline at 5 p.m. Wednesday.
Cindy Golding, chairwoman of the Linn County Republicans, on Wednesday said the county party may convene a convention in the months ahead to nominate Republican candidates to run for county attorney, treasurer and/or recorder in the Nov. 4 general election.
"We think we have some good people," Golding said. It can be difficult, she said, for some who hold full-time jobs to decide if they have time to seek a full-time county office.
In the two supervisor races, four Democratic candidates are vying for the Democratic spot on the general election ballot for the District 1 supervisor seat held by Lu Barron, a Democrat. She is not seeking re-election.
The four are Ian Cullis, 65, former Robins mayor; Jim Houser, 60, former longtime Linn County supervisor; Andrea Jackson, 45, a teacher at Regis Middle School in Cedar Rapids; and Kim Taylor, 45, a veteran staff member in Cedar Rapids for Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin.
In the second primary race, in District 5, incumbent John Harris, 60, a Republican and former mayor of Palo, is being challenged by Mark Banowetz, a Republican and former Ely City Council member.
The winner of the District 5 Republican primary will take on Becky Shoop, 57, of rural Walker, first deputy in the Linn County Auditor's Office. She was the lone Democrat to file nomination papers for the District 5 race by Wednesday's deadline.
The winner of the District 1 Democratic primary will face Dennis Petersen, 56, a Realtor in Cedar Rapids and the only Republican to file nomination papers in the race. Petersen ran for the seat in 2010, and was defeated by incumbent Barron, who won 57 percent of the vote to Petersen's 43 percent.