Candidates line up for August primary

Mark Brooky • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:32 AM

Former Grand Haven Mayor Roger Bergman and former Ferrysburg Mayor Jeff Stille will face off for the post, along with Timothy O'Donnell of Spring Lake. The winner will take on Don Munski, the lone Democrat to file for the race, in the November general election.

Incumbent County Commissioner Philip Kuyers is being challenged by Kenneth David of Grand Haven Township in the Aug. 7 Republican primary for the 9th District seat. There is no Democrat in the race.

The county drain commissioner race has three Republicans: Mike Munch of Crockery Township, Joe Bush of West Olive and Martha Urbin of Holland. There is no Democrat in that race either.

Longtime County Clerk Daniel Krueger is the only name on the ballot for the newly combined office of clerk-register. Gary Scholten, who has been the county's register of deeds since 1998, had contemplated running for it but decided against it.

Ottawa County Prosecutor Ron Frantz, Sheriff Gary Rosema and Treasurer Bradley Slagh are all running unopposed.

Another Republican contest in the August primary is the Grand Haven Township clerk post. Incumbent Sue Buitenhuis will be challenged by Simone Young.

Grand Haven Township Supervisor Karl French and Treasurer William Kieft are running unopposed.

There are five Republican candidates seeking four four-year terms as Grand Haven Township trustees. Incumbents Maria Veach and Laurie Larsen are on the ballot with newcomers Calvin Meeusen, Mike Hutchins and Howard Behm. Trustees Bob Worthington and Tom Jenkins did not file for re-election.

In Robinson Township, incumbent Tracy Stille-Mulligan is being challenged by fellow Republican Kathryn Kuck for Robinson Township supervisor. Township Clerk Jackie Frye and Treasurer Bonnie Hayward are unopposed. Incumbent Bernice Berens and newcomer Travis VugteVeen are the only names on the ballot for two trustee seats.

In Spring Lake Township, Supervisor John Nash, Clerk Carolyn Boersma and Treasurer Jim Koster are all unopposed. Two incumbents, Lawrence Mierle and Ron Lindquist, are on the ballot for four township trustee seats with newcomers Jim Cihak and Richard Homan. All are Republicans.

In Crockery Township, Supervisor Leon Stille, Clerk Kathleen Buchanan, Treasurer Judith VanBemmelen, and trustees Richard Suchecki and Gordon Constantine are all unopposed. All are Republicans.

The state and U.S. representatives that serve Northwest Ottawa County are both running for their second two-year terms and are unopposed in the primary.

State Rep. Amanda Price, R-Park Township, will seek re-election to the House 89th District seat. Unchallenged by a Republican in the primary, Price will face Don Bergman, a Park Township Democrat who lost to her in 2010, in the Nov. 6 general election.

"Michigan is a great state and I am honored to represent the citizens of the 89th District," said Price, 55. "But we have not yet turned this ship around. It is imperative that Michigan be set on a new course and I want to continue to work hard for the residents of Ottawa County."

U.S. Rep. Bill Huizenga, R-Zeeland, is unchallenged in the both the primary by a Republican and in the November election by a Democrat. David Takitaki, a Muskegon Township Democrat, has backed out of the race because of health issues.

"I firmly believe that more needs to be done to cut spending, create jobs and protect the lives of the unborn," Huizenga, 43, explained his desire to continue in Congress. "We have moved the discussion on the need to address our deficit and debt, now we need action to stop irresponsible trillion dollar deficits."

Voters in several area communities will see millages on their August ballot. In Grand Haven Township, voters will be asked to approve a one-year, 0.59-mill fire apparatus proposal, plus renewals for the local museum and senior citizen agency.

A proposal asking Spring Lake Village voters if they want to disincorporate the village and merge it with Spring Lake Township may or may not be on the ballot, depending on the legal determination of a petition drive.

Tribune reporters Alex Doty, Marie Havenga and Kyle Moroney contributed to this report.

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