Multiple races happening this Election Day in Michiana
GOSHEN, Ind.-- Today marks Election Day for multiple races in Michiana. Registered voters will head out to the polls to decide whether or not to keep the current Benton Harbor and St. Joseph, Michigan Commissioners, or welcome in new faces. Concord Community School Corporation’s referendum election is also happening, to vote to keep their current referendum, or replace it for an additional 8 years.
Here is a breakdown of what you need to know about the elections, races and candidates:
Benton Harbor Commissioner's Ward 3 race
- She is the current commissioner of the ward, and has been there since 2005.
- She says she an advocate for vulnerable Benton Harbor residents, and is striving to enact more programs into the city, and improve communication amongst city leaders and community members if she were to be re-elected as commissioner.
- Henry’s competitor.
- He’s a homebuilder and the owner of “Homes by R.L Booker.”
Benton Harbor Commissioner's Ward 4 race
Ruthie McCoy Haralson
- She is the current incumbent in the commissioner seat. She’s been there since 2013 with 31 years of commissioner's experience.
- She also co-chairs the public safety committee.
- She's striving to make sure residents have good drinking water.
- She serves on various local boards and commissions in the area. One of those positions is as chairman of the “United Auto Workers.”
- Her goals if she takes the spot over Haralson, is to bring together youth innovations, and solve the lead water crisis the city is experiencing.
Benton Harbor Commissioner's At-Large race
Duane l. Seats ll
- He is the current commissioner in the position. He has served for 12 years in that position
- He also served 3 years as Mayor
- He is also a current incumbent in the At-Large seat, serving for 6 years.
- He previously worked for the Benton Harbor Police Department but is retired now.
- He also served as City Manager
- He currently serves as chair of Benton Harbor’s Public Safety, and Parks and Recreation committees, and co-chairs the Personnel and Finance committee.
- She is the competitor against Seats and Singleton.
- She served as Coordinating Director of Marketing and Development at “A&B Solutions LLC,” and also worked for customer relations at Whirlpool.
- Her goals if she were to take the spot is to create innovative programs for youth, work with neighborhood cleanup programs, install more city cameras, and work hands on with entrepreneurs.
St. Joseph Commissioner's race
Michele Turner Binkley
- She is the current commissioner in St. Joseph Michigan who was elected in February to replace then incumbent, Peggy Getty.
- Her goals if she were to stay in the role are to continue to work on building up the recent accomplishments in small businesses, and to enhance the city’s park system.
Thomas D. Jennings
- He’s involved in various charities, restaurants and property management projects.
- 5th generation native in St. Joseph.
- His motto is “values, vision and service”
- His goal is to create an environment that attracts youthful families and allow community voices to be heard.
Michael R. Sarola
- He is a Senior Director of Sales at “Peterson Farm’s Incorporated” and “GDS Holdings LLC.”
- She is a forensic interviewer at the Children’s Advocacy Center of Southwest Michigan
- She also works with the Berrien County Prosecutor's office, local law enforcement and Department of Health and Human Services.
- Her goals are to utilize the experiences she has by listening and considering all viewpoints of the community.
- He runs two local businesses, “Williams Buildings” and “Storage City.”
- His goal is to create a more vibrant environment for the city and community of St. Joseph, Michigan.
Concord Community Schools Referendum
If the referendum gets approved, it would reduce the tax levy by 40.5 cents per $100 of property value, to 32 cents per $100 of property value beginning in 2022. This is a 20 percent decrease, and would make it the lowest tax rate for the school district in 10 years.
According to Concord Community schools, if district residents vote “yes” on this referendum, it would benefit them and allow for more individualized attention to students, more programming and real-world opportunities, and would also be able to get every single student a Chromebook.
Benton Harbor and St. Joseph Michigan
- Registered voters: local polling sites
- Unregistered voters in Benton Harbor: City Clerk's Office, 200 E. Wall St.
- Unregistered voters in St. Joseph: City Clerk’s Office, 700 Broad St.
The polls open up at 7 AM and run until 8 PM for both cities.
Concord community Schools
- FOP #52: 1003 Industrial Parkway, Elkhart
- Sugar Grove: 58512 Old County Road 17, Goshen
- Elkhart County Public Services Building: 4320 Elkhart Road, Goshen
- AMBS (Lambright Center): 3003 Benham Avenue, Elkhart
- - Concord Fire Station: 23625 County Road 18, Elkhart
Elkhart Valley Church of the Brethren: 24955 County Road 24, Elkhart
The polls there open from 6 AM to 6 PM.