WELLSBURG - Brooke County voters on Tuesday re-elected a county magistrate and two school board members, but the winner for the second magistrate seat is less clear due to problems with computer voting machines in two precincts.
Unofficial totals put Robin Snyder, incumbent candidate for Brooke County magistrate, and Brian Ferguson and Jim Piccirillo, incumbent candidates for the county's school board, as the winners of their races.
Unofficial and incomplete totals are Snyder, with 2,434 votes; Linda Viderman, 1,004 votes; Karen Stuck, 858 votes; Cathy Dillon, 804 votes; Calvin Heck, 633 votes; George Lewis, 515 votes; and Art "Choke" Sullivan, 306 votes.
All are challengers except Snyder. Mike Allman resigned as magistrate so he could run for sheriff.
The unofficial and incomplete totals for the two school board seats are Ferguson, with 2,831 votes; incumbent Jim Piccirillo, 2,285 votes; challenger Bill Schwertfeger, 2,223 votes; and challenger Daniel McCauley, 1,125 votes.
All of the magistrate candidates are Democrats. No Republicans filed.
The school board race is nonpartisan, so it appeared on ballots for both tickets.
The totals don't include votes cast by 125 Democratic voters and 21 Republicans in Precinct 23B at Hooverson Heights and 212 Democratic voters and 68 Republican voters in Precinct 34 on Marland Heights.
Problems with machines in the districts required county election clerks to remove the paper record for votes cast there and hand-count votes cast for the school board and one of the two county commission races into early today.
County Clerk Sylvia Benzo said votes for the magistrate seat from the two precincts will be counted when ballots are canvassed Monday. All totals are unofficial until the canvass is completed.
Snyder said of the victory, "I'm ecstatic. I'm very happy to continue to serve the citizens of Brooke County and very happy they entrusted me to return to this position."
She said she's involved with the county's drug court and in the governor's drug task force and other groups and as magistrate, will continue to work to make people aware of the drug problem and that there is help for those who are addicted.
Ferguson said of the election's outcome, "I'm definitely pleased. I want to give all the thanks in the world to the voters."
Asked about goals for his next term, he noted the school district will see a windfall from a natural gas lease agreement it entered into with Chesapeake Energy.
Asked how the board plans to use the money, he said, "We're not going to do anything until the check is in hand. We'll see what the needs are."
He said the construction of a new middle school near Brooke High School is part of the school system's 10-year facilities plan but it will depend on the availability of state funds and passage of a local levy or bond issue.
Ferguson said he also will be promoting renewal of the school system's five-year levy in 2014.
Piccirillo said, "I'm very pleased with the results and that the people were willing to return me to office."
He said he believes efforts to improve the school district's image, including acting swiftly when any staff violated the school district's code of conduct, have resulted in his and Ferguson's re-election.
Piccirillo said his future goals will include determining how best to use money from the natural gas lease and reviewing the school district's facilities plan, including the possible new middle school.
The primary election also served as a trial run for unopposed candidates on the Republican and Democratic tickets for seats in Congress and the state Legislature.
Advancing to the general election because they were unopposed in their respective parties are:
Republican incumbent David McKinley and Democratic challenger Sue Thorn, both of Wheeling, who are vying for a seat representing the local region in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Republican challenger Pat McGeehan of Chester and Democratic incumbent Jack Yost of Wellsburg, who seek to represent Hancock, Brooke and Ohio counties and part of Marshall County in the state Senate.
Republican Lynn Davis of Wellsburg and Democrat Phillip Diserio of Follansbee, who are seeking a seat representing the 2nd Delegate District, which includes Brooke County and part of Ohio County, in the state House of Delegates.
Diserio was appointed to the seat after Tim Ennis resigned from the position to serve as Brooke County commissioner.