Tuesday’s primary election presents Gogebic County voters with a few key decisions that will impact how the November general election plays out, as well as a proposal that addresses the state’s personal property tax.
The statewide measure, Proposal 1, would remove Michigan’s personal property tax and replace it with a local community stabilization.
The PPT is a tax commercial and industrial businesses pay on things, such as equipment and machinery.
The proposal would reduce the state’s “use tax,” coming from items brought into the state or purchased from out-of-state retailers, replace it with the community stabilization, and increase a portion of the use tax for aid to school districts.
The ballot measure would also create a Local Stabilization Authority, which would be prohibited from increasing taxes, to provide revenue to local governments. The revenue would be used for items like emergency services and responders.
Additionally, the total use tax rate would not be able to increase beyond the current 6 percent.
The measure is designed to increase small businesses in Michigan and create jobs.
Other ballot measures for the primary election include a four-year renewal of a .2-mill levy to fund the Gogebic County Animal Control Program.
The millage has been in effect since 1998, funding HOPE Animal Shelter and a part-time animal control officer.
The final measure asks for renewal of a .6-mill levy for the Gogebic County’s Maintenance of Effort payments to the state of Michigan for operation of the Gogebic Medical Care Facility.
Gogebic voters will help decide which Republican candidate for Michigan’s First Congressional District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives will face Democrat Jerry Cannon in the November election.
Current Rep. Dan Benishek, R-Crystal Falls, will face challenger Alan Arcand, R-Iron River, in the Aug. 5 election.
At the state level, voters will have to decide which Democrat they want to face Sen. Tom Casperson, R-Escanaba, in November.
Chris LaMarche will compete on Aug. 5 with Christopher M. Germain for the top Democratic spot for the State Senate’s District 38 seat.
The second District of Gogebic County’s Board of Commissioners is also up for grabs in the August primary.
Tom Laabs and Dave Ramme, both Democrats in the city of Ironwood’s precinct 1, are eyeing up the seat, with the winner running unopposed in the general election.
There are also no November opponents for the primary winner for District 6 of the county commission.
Bob Orlich will face Don Pezzetti on Tuesday for the top Democrat position from the city and township of Wakefield.
The final position to be decided in August is the city of Bessemer’s delegate to the county convention.
Geraldine Burt will face off against DeLaine Maki, both Republicans, with the winner running unopposed in November.
Positions already set for the November general election ballot include Republican Gov. Rick Snyder, who will face Democrat Mark Schauer.
Voters will also decide who gets Michigan’s second U.S. Senate seat in the general election, which Carl Levin occupied for a number of years.
Terri Lynn Land, a Republican and former Michigan secretary of state, is unopposed in the primaries and set to face off against her Democrat opponent, U.S. Rep. Gary Peters, Democrat.
Scott Dianda, D-Calumet, currently occupies Michigan’s 110th District seat in the State House. He will face Republican challenger Bob Michaels, of Ironwood Township, in November.
At the county level, Leroy Kangas, a Democrat, is running unopposed for the Board of Commissioners District 1 seat.
Other unopposed candidates for the board include Democrat James D. Oliver, District 3; Jeffrey R. Wasley, Democrat of District 4; Joe Bonovetz, a District 5 Democrat; and George R. Peterson III running as a Democrat for District 7.
Peter Koruga, a Republican, will face Democrat Gail F. Maki-Dalbec in the November elections for Wakefield’s delegate to county convention seat.
Sherry Forslund is running unopposed as a Republican for Bessemer Township’s delegate to county convention, as is Republican Charlie E. Best for the city of Ironwood’s Precinct 1 delegate position.