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Sunday, May 1, 2016

Fillmore returns familiar faces to town office

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Fillmore voters went with familiar names and faces in Tuesday's election, even if it wasn't simply a sweep by the incumbents.

Clerk-treasurer Wanda Seidler held on to her position with 46 percent of the vote in the three-way race. Curt Leonard, who previously held the Ward 1 council position for eight years, unseated board president Wes Terhune with nearly 69 percent of the vote.

Ward 2 councilor Alan Jones and Ward 3 councilor Tami Parker will both return to office, as they were unopposed.

In the Ward 1 race Leonard garnered 55 votes to Terhune's 25. He said he decided to seek the seat again after listening to the concerns of neighbors and discussing the issue with his wife.

"I had a lot of people in town who came up to me long ago and said, 'Can you run again? We need you back in there.' I talked to my wife and after all the thinking we said, OK we'll try it one more time," Leonard said. "I made my mind up that if I didn't make it this time, I wasn't going to do it again."

With two terms under his belt, Leonard said the phone calls a council member can expect will not be a surprise to him.

"I remember all of them -- some good ones, the bad ones," Leonard said. "I think with the people coming back and talking to me I kind of realized that maybe I did something.

"What you have to remember is you have to get in there and do what's good for the town, not just what's good for the individual. That's what I always tried to do, and I think that's going to help a lot."

In the clerk-treasurer race, Seidler retained her seat with 39 votes. Margaret Alexander was next with 24, followed by Kari Bills with 20.

While she was uncertain about the night's result, Seidler spent the night in normal fashion, being a mom rather than waiting for results at the courthouse.

"My son had basketball practice and my husband's been on the road all day. I decided to take him over there, but I had my phone with me and was keeping track of things," Seidler said. "I wasn't sure how this was going to go."

With four years of work behind her, Seidler said the town still has a lot of work to do.

"We've gone through so much with that office," she said. "When I took it over the first time it was really years behind in technology. We've spent the last few years being able to afford setting up the software, buying the equipment."

Having worked with an accountant on the reporting software, Seidler hopes the process will soon be streamlined. Afterward, she hopes to begin bringing grant money into the town.

"If we get all that in order, I hope to get a utility clerk, which will free me up to get more involved with grants -- that's what Fillmore needs is grants," Seidler said.

For his part, Leonard also hopes to move the town forward. He looks forward to working with fellow councilors Jones and Parker in that effort.

"I worked with Alan before at the fire department in Fillmore and I've known Tami for a long time," Leonard said. "I'm looking forward to helping and working and everything and maybe trying to get Fillmore back to where it used to be. It's going to be a lot of work but we'll get it done."