by Ivan Foley and Stephanie Eaton
Ron Schieber was a comfortable winner in a three-way race for presiding commissioner of Platte County in Tuesday’s primary election.
Schieber, who has served as a state representative from southern Platte County, easily out-distanced former county commissioner Jim Plunkett and political newcomer Russ Wojtkiewicz.
Schieber finished with 4,212 votes (49%) to Plunkett’s 3,285 (38%) and 1,054 (12%) for Wojtkiewicz.
All three are Republicans. No Democrats filed for the office, giving Schieber a clear path through the November general election.
In the other contested countywide race in the Republican primary, Nancy Armstrong handily defeated Robert Boyer for county clerk. Armstrong attracted 5289 votes (64%) to 2780 ((36%) for Boyer.
There are no Democrats who filed for clerk, so Tuesday’s result in effect seals the office for Armstrong.
Schieber said he would like to thank voters for electing him to serve as the presiding commissioner. He said his campaign allowed him to meet a lot of Platte County residents.
“It has been an incredible journey for me personally to get into parts of the county and get to know people in parts of the county where I have not campaigned before,” he said.
“What I have found is that Platte County residents are just incredibly good human beings and I am just so pleased to have the opportunity to serve them for the next four years as their presiding commissioner,” Schieber stated.
Schieber said he is not planning to take his victory lightly and said he is going to get to work, focusing on policy issues he discussed during his campaign.
Some of the major points of Schieber’s campaign included the realignment of the half cent park tax to put a portion of that tax toward the priority service of law enforcement, including payment of the county’s $10 million emergnecy radio project. He said previous commissioners have “kicked that can down the road.”
He also advocated selling Shiloh Springs Golf Course and said he would “restore trust” to the office of presiding commissioner. Instituting 2-5-10 year budget planning was also in his campaign platform.
“Throughout the campaign I have been told by many elected officials that the things that I think need to be done just cannot be done but I have not been given a good reason. So, I plan to sit down with folks, who will want to sit down, so that we can hash that out.”
Armstrong said she wanted to thank the voters who entrusted her with their trust and support. Armstrong said she is excited to serve as the Platte County clerk.
“I want to get in there and do the best job possible,” Armstrong said.
Armstrong said before she takes office she plans on learning more about the mechanics of the office and learning as much as she can about the daily operations of the office.
Platte County voters also weighed in on several amendment issues at Tuesday’s election.
Amendment No. 1 deal with guaranteeing the rights of Missourians to engage in farming and ranching practices. Platte County voters opposed 53% to 47%, but issue passed statewide.
Amendment No. 5 expanded the right of Missourians to keep and bear arms to include ammunition ad related accessories for such arms. Platte County voters supported this measure 58% to 42% and it passed statewide.
Amendment No. 7 would have added a 3/4 cent sales tax for transportation initiatives. Platte County voters overwhelmingly rejected this tax, opposing it 61% to 39%. It also failed statewide.
Amendment No. 8 would have created a veterans lottery ticket for projects and services related to veterans. Platte County voters opposed this idea 56% to 44%. It was also defeated statewide.
Amendment No. 9 amends the state constitution to specify that electronic data and communications have the same protections from unreasonable searches and seizures as persons, papers, homes and effects. Platte County voters overwhelmingly supported this measure with 79% in favor to only 21% opposed. It also easily passed statewide.
Voter turnout in Platte County was 21.49%. In last week’s issue of The Landmark, Wendy Flanigan, one of the directors of the Platte County Board of Elections, had predicted a turnout of “around 21 percent.”