South Routt Election Results: Yampa has new mayor
Oak Creek reelects three town board members
There were multiple close races for key positions in town government in Oak Creek and Yampa on Tuesday, April 5.
Voters had until 7 p.m. Tuesday to turn in their ballots to town hall. Vote tallies from Tuesday night are considered preliminary.
In Yampa, current town trustee Stacy Geilert defeated incumbent Mayor Jeff Drust by just five votes, according to the preliminary results from Yampa Town Clerk Sheila Symons.
Geilert, who was appointed to the Yampa’s town council in 2020, won 60 votes to Drust’s 55.
“I’m definitely excited,” Geilert said upon learning she was ahead in the count. “I think our town has said that they want something different.”
The results will not be official until next week, but Symons said there was just one more ballot that could potentially be cured, so the results are unlikely to change.
Geilert said one of her first priorities would be to get a code enforcement officer for the town, which she said has been a big thing Yampa has been working on.
In Oak Creek, Melissa Dobbins, Bernie Gagne and Kelly McElfish were reelected to the town board based on the preliminary vote totals from Oak Creek Town Manager David Torgler.
Voters were asked to pick three of the five candidates with the top three vote-getters being elected.
Dobbins, 41, was appointed to the board last fall and kept her seat with highest vote total of 111. Dobbins has lived in Oak Creek for two years, believing she has found the place where her family wants to be long term.
In an interview with Pilot & Today prior to the election, Dobbins said she would like to expand recreation opportunities in Oak Creek and look into building a community center.
“Community centers are the heart of communities,” Dobbins said. “I’m still learning a lot about the working pieces of that, but I know our community would love one.”
McElfish, 49, received the second-highest vote count with 101, and she will continue to serve on the board after first joining in 2014. In an interview prior to the election, McElfish said she wants to serve on the board because she values getting involved and giving back to the community.
“We need to have people to continue to fund these resources that we want,” McElfish said. “Revitalization of downtown has always been at the forefront of what I believe.”
Gagne, 58, will continue a 13-year tenure on the board into a fourth term after receiving 77 votes. He initially joined the board because he felt the town’s leadership wasn’t doing enough at the time.
Before the election, Gagne said he feels that updating Oak Creek’s comprehensive plan should be a priority for the board.
“The work we do today is laying the groundwork for what happens 10 and 20 years from now,” Gagne said. “We all just cherish this little town and its character, and we want to preserve it.”
Challenger candidates David Wolfson and Joe Hragyil received 56 and 51 votes, respectively.
Torgler said there were eight rejected ballots that the voters could still cure with the town before the results become official next week.
To reach Dylan Anderson, call 970-871-4247 or email danderson@SteamboatPilot.com.
Support Local Journalism
Support Local Journalism
Readers around Steamboat and Routt County make the Steamboat Pilot & Today’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.
Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.
Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.
The Hayden Public Library will be holding the annual Scholastic Book Fair through Tuesday, May 24.