Steamboat Springs school board passes resolution canceling uncontested election

There will be no school board election for the Steamboat Springs School District this year after the school board passed a resolution Sept. 6, cancelling its Nov. 7 election.

Three seats for the school board were open, and only three individuals filed paperwork to fill those positions, negating the need for an election. Anyone who wanted to run as a write-in candidate needed to file an affidavit of intent to do so by Sept. 1.

“There is a process that write-in candidates must undergo if intending to run for the board,” said Mackenzie Gillespie of the Routt County Clerk and Recorder’s Office. “There is no provision for a wide-open write-in election.”

With no one coming forward with such a request, the Steamboat Springs board of education opted to pass a resolution canceling the election as a cost-saving measure for the district.

According to Laura Milius, the school district’s director of communications, the board can instruct the designated election official to cancel the election and declare candidates to be elected.

Lara Craig will be the only incumbent returning to the board. Elected in 2019, Craig is seeking her second term on the board of education.

Matthew Rice, who was appointed to fill a vacancy in February, chose not to run for an open seat. Alissa Merage, another board member who was appointed and not elected in 2022 and currently serves as the board treasurer, also declined to run.

Newcomers to the board include Kevin Callahan and Leah Helme. Callahan, Helme and Craig will be sworn into office within 10 days of the election being certified after Nov. 7.

Callahan and Helme did not respond to inquires regarding their positions and impending appointment to the school board on Monday.

Likewise, Craig and Rice also did not return messages left for them on Monday, and school board President Katy Lee did not respond to several calls for comment Monday.

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