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Ballots by the Numbers


Citizens of Polk County made their way to the polls for the general elections on Tuesday, April 4.

Voter turnout in Polk County has increased, according to the County Clerk Rachel Lightfoot.

Of Polk County’s 19,549 registered voters, there were 3,072 ballots that were cast, or 15.71% who went to the polls on Tuesday.

“The voter turnout was really good. It was higher than I expected,” said Lightfoot, adding that she “was very pleased” by the numbers.

Comparatively, last year’s general election saw 2,323 voters cast ballots, or about 13.78% of the county’s 16,855 registered voters in 2022.

On the ballot, voters were able to vote on local tax issues, municipal candidates, and school board members.

Polk County

  • Proposition U: The Polk County use tax issue, was not approved by voters on Tuesday. The tax issue had 1,731 votes (about 58%) opposed to it, and 1,255 votes (about 42%) in favor of it.
  • Polk County Marijuana Sales Tax: Voters of Polk County approved the marijuana sales tax issue, which will allow the county to impose a countywide sales tax of three percent on all tangible personal property retail sales of adult-use marijuana sold in the county. It was approved with 1,990 yes responses and 1,029 no votes (that is, approximately 66% in favor and 34% against).


  • City of Bolivar: Christopher D. Warwick was re-elected as mayor. He was the only candidate to file for the position. Incumbent Steve Skopec will continue to serve as an alderman of Ward 1, winning the open seat over Malcolm Green. Skopec won 213 votes, and Green had 150. Dusty Ross will keep his seat as Ward 2 alderman; he was the only candidate to file for the seat. Ashley Raines won the seat for Ward 3 alderman with 94 votes after defeating incumbent Dan Wohnoutka’s 81 votes. Brian Wilson was elected as a Ward 4 alderman over Rex Austin and incumbent Charles W. Keith. Wilson won 108 votes. Austin had 77, and Keith had 30. Coyle Neal won the seat for city collector after running unopposed. Voters of Bolivar voted against the Bolivar use tax, known as Proposition U. The tax issue received 561 no votes (about 52%) and 511 yes votes (about 48%).
  • City of Fair Play: Dewey Rumfelt received re-election as the city’s mayor after defeating Steven Hornbeck and Robert Dunlap on Tuesday. Rumfelt garnered 53 votes, or about 68%, to Hornbeck’s 17 votes (around 22%) and Dunlap’s 8 votes (around 10%). Steven L. Bruce and Michael Dennis were voted to serve on the two open seats for the city’s alderman at-large over challengers Jim Skopec and Vi Patterson. Bruce received 48 votes, and Dennis won 40. Skopec had 27 votes, and Patterson had 26.
  • City of Humansville: In the race for a one-year term North Ward alderman seat, Dawn Henson won over Gary Shannon 15-12, or by about 56% to 44%. Amber Winkler won a separate race for a two-year term North Ward alderman seat; she was the only candidate to file for the seat. Ashley Albright will serve as South Ward alderman. She was the only candidate for the seat. Voters in Humansville voted in favor of the marijuana sales tax issue, allowing the city to impose a sales tax of three percent on all retail sales of adult-use marijuana sold in the city. The issue brought 50 votes (around 78%) in favor and 14 votes (around 22%) opposed.
  • Village of Flemington: William “Bud” Jackson and Peggy Welch were elected to serve on the village’s two open seats on the board of trustees. Jackson won 11 votes, and Welch had 10. Challenger Vincent Deeser received 6 votes. A ballot measure allowing the village to forgo annual elections if the number of candidates equals the number of open positions was not passed by voters, receiving 12 no votes (about 71%) and only 5 yes votes (about 29%).

School Boards

  • Bolivar R-1: Ronald Owens, Daniel Tim Goodman, and Brad Wommack were elected to serve on the board of education after winning the three open seats over incumbent Jared Taylor, Carl W. Summers Jr., incumbent Jeralen Andrews Shive, and Joshua Alexander Laird. Owens won 1,206 votes, Goodman had 1,130 votes, and Wommack got 750 votes. Taylor had 747 votes, Summers had 695, Shive had 595, and Laird had 450. Bolivar voters approved the school district tax levy, known as Proposition Liberator 2025. The levy received 1,093 yes votes (around 53%) and 967 no votes (around 47%).
  • Fair Play R-2: Michael P. Underwood and incumbents Cindy Lee Bruce and Lauren Shuler-West will serve on the Fair Play board of education after winning election over incumbent Jennifer Schwartz on Tuesday. Bruce received 213 votes. Underwood had 199 and Shuler-West had 190. Schwartz received 87 votes.
  • Halfway R-3: Dillon Legan, Payne Grant, and incumbent Kenton Dwight Payne were elected to the Halfway board of education. Legan received 141 votes, Grant received 124, and Payne received 74. Challengers Matthew R. Forrest and incumbent Jeremy Sibley garnered 73 and 69 votes, respectively.
  • Marion C. Early R-5: Incumbents Kevin Painter, Thomas Francka, and Ginger Bumgarner will serve on the MCE school board. Painter won 187 votes, Francka got 168 votes, and Bumgarner got 166 votes. Challenger Brandon Smith had 81 votes.