Oak Creek voters get full ballot | SteamboatToday.com
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Oak Creek voters get full ballot

Oak Creek voters face a loaded ballot today.

Oak Creek voters face a loaded ballot today.

Unlike previous municipal elections that yielded low voter turnout and small candidate fields, today’s election boasts nine candidates for the Oak Creek Town Board and two candidates for mayor.

While municipal elections in smaller communities often do not elicit many voters or candidates, controversy at Town Hall enticed many new faces to run for office in Oak Creek.



Mayor Deb VanGundy, who encountered no opposition two years ago, faces controversial community activist Cargo Rodeman in the mayor’s race.

While trustees serve four-year terms, the mayor of Oak Creek serves two-year terms.



The weeks leading up to the election produced surprises that were not always pleasant, VanGundy said.

“It’s not what I expected,” she said. “I’ll be glad when it’s over.”

Regardless of the outcome of today’s election, VanGundy said she anticipated the town returning to normal.

She is prepared for inevitable change as the town continues to grow, VanGundy said, and ready to meet it head-on.

Rodeman said she would feel the same relief when the polls close tonight.

Despite the long road to April 2, she said, the town’s support has been overwhelming.

Older residents and youngsters alike have called with encouragement and offers to help get the word out about her candidacy, she said.

Rodeman said she expected the election would bring a different atmosphere to Town Hall and the town.

Oak Creek needs a positive change, she said, starting with its children, water and streets.

The young people in town deserve more opportunities for recreation, she added.

Rodeman, who has had frequent run-ins with the police department in Oak Creek, has emerged as a plausible candidate for mayor after initial uncertainty about her candidacy. She said she has a sincere desire to change the way Town Hall operates.

“I should never pose a threat,” she said. “I will not do anything but good.”

If elected, she said she looked forward to working with the town board to curb selective government and promote goodwill in Oak Creek.

“I want any good ideas,” she said. “Anything that has good common sense and no meanness.”

In addition to Paxton, three other trustees are seeking reelection.

Sonja Norris, Mike Kien and Charlie Bevan will appear on the ballot with newcomers John Crawford, Bob Dresden, J. Elliot, Robert Hageman and David Stordal.


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