Field narrows in Edgerton School Board race
EDGERTON The Feb. 21 primary election for three seats on the Edgerton School Board has just become a nonprimary, so to speak.
Think of it as a preview of the April general election.
Edgerton resident Daniel L. Ray, one of seven candidates who filed to run for three open school board seats in the April election, has dropped out of the race. Ray's decision was officially announced Wednesday at a candidates forum at the Edgerton Public Library.
Ray didn't attend, but he forwarded a written statement and an official read it at the forum. In the statement, Ray called the other six candidates "high quality" and commended their candidacy. He wrote that he decided against running because of work demands.
The decision complicates the race because Ray's name will still appear on the primary ballot, even though he no longer wants to run. That means the race technically will still have a primary Feb. 21, even though six candidates are now vying for three seats.
Other candidates are Edgerton residents Derek Ninmer, Jim Klein, Jon Raymond, Dianne Davis, David Davis and Robert Chapados.
Rock County Clerk Lori Stottler said Ray missed the deadline to withdraw his candidacy, and the ballots are already certified.
"We've programmed 48 machines and tested them," Stottler said. "The ballots have been ordered, and so he's on there even though he's said he's dropping out of the race. Once you hand in nomination papers and you're certified for the ballot, you're on the ballot."
Stottler acknowledged that the primary carries costs that the public now could perceive as unnecessary, but she said it would be a "horrendous cost in terms of resources" to clear the school board ballot and start over again.
In his written statement, Ray asked voters to consider voting for other candidates on the ballot instead of him. But it's possible Ray could still win in the primary.
If he won, Stottler said, Ray would become a candidate on the April election ballot. He'd bump another candidate who actually wants to be on the school board.
"If he was a favored candidate and wins in the primary, it's going to create for some sore feelings all around," Stottler said.
Ray did not return calls by The Gazette seeking further comment on why he no longer wants a spot on the board, and it's not clear when he made the decision.
The Gazette had called Ray on Sunday in an attempt to confirm his candidacy.
Ray declined an interview at that time, saying that he was busy watching the Super Bowl.