Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Iron County voters turn out to polls

While Mercer voters approved a school bond proposal, several incumbents in various local races across Iron County lost in Tuesday's election.

The Mercer School District asked voters to approve a bond proposal to raise $800,000 a year beginning with the 2024-2025 school year, through the 2028-2029 school year for maintaining operations, programs and facilities.

The measure passed 455 to 286, or 61% to 39%. A similar proposal failed last year 393-365 (52%-48%).

Also in Mercer, Tanner Hiller defeated incumbent Henry Joustra 395-248 (60%-37%) for a seat on the school board, and Christan Brandt and incumbent Michael Lambert won the two spots available on the Mercer town board, while incumbent Vic Ouimette finished third. Brandt had 401 votes (35.1%), followed by Lambert with 395 (34.6%) and Ouimette with 333 (29.2%).

The Iron County Board of Supervisors also saw incumbents lose, including county board chairman Joseph Pinardi and vice chairman Thomas Thompson Jr.

In District 2, Hurley's Ward 2, Pinardi was beaten by Mario Loreti 62 to 41 (60%-40%).

In District 13, Mercer's Ward 3, Roxanne Lutgen topped Thompson 91 to 64 (58%-41%).

In the only other contested race for a county board seat, challenger Doug Swartz defeated incumbent Brandon Snyder in District 7, Kimball, 76 to 66 (53%-46%).

All 15 Iron County supervisor positions were up for election, including in District 11, Mercer's Ward 1, where Rick Boes won running unopposed for the seat left open after the death of John Sendra.

Other supervisors winning unopposed included: Jamey Francis, District 3, Hurley, Ward 3; Larry Youngs, District 4, Hurley, Ward 4; William Thomas, District 5, Montreal, Ward 2; Roy Haeger, District 6, Montreal, Ward 1; Karl Krall, District 8, Gurney and Saxon; Patrick Hanson, District 9, Anderson, Knight and Pence; Scott Erickson, District 10, Carey and Oma; Karen Lauer, District 12, Mercer, Ward 2; Tanner Hiller, District 14, Mercer, Ward 4; and Kurt Wolff, District 15, Sherman.

There was no name on the ballot for the District 1, Hurley's Ward 1, county board seat.


In Hurley, Mayor Joanne Bruneau was re-elected running unopposed.

There were seven people running for six spots on the Hurley City Council. The top six vote getters were: Stephanie Innes with 244 votes; Robert Lanctoe, 231; Logan Dahlbacka, 220; Jamey Francis, 199; Rita Franzoi, 191; and Joseph Kasper, 183. Incumbent Joseph Pinardi had 138 votes.


In Montreal, Mayor Kelly Traczyk was re-elected, running unopposed; as were sitting City Council members Steve Fiene and William Thomas, also running unopposed.

Hurley School Board

Jessica Leinon-Novascone was re-elected to her seat on the Hurley School Board, running unopposed.

Presidential primaries

Tuesday was also the presidential primary in Wisconsin, despite the fact President Joe Biden, a Democrat, and former President Donald Trump, a Republican, are the only two candidates left standing before their parties' conventions this summer.

Statewide, Biden earned 88% of his party's vote, according to the Associated Press. The choice of "uninstructed delegate" earned 9%, while Dean Phillips received 3%.

Trump also won his primary easily, with 79% of the vote statewide. Other tallies on the Republican ledger included: Nikki Haley, 13%; Ron DeSantis, 3%; uninstructed delegate, 2%; Chris Christie, 2%; and Vivek Ramaswamy, 1%.

In Iron County, 1,048 voters voted in the Republican primary, with 88% voting for Trump. Haley received 6% and all other choices with 2% or less.

On the Democrat side of the ballot in Iron County, 93% of the 670 voters voted for Biden, followed by 4% for uninstructed delegate and 3% for Phillips.

Biden and Trump also won primaries handily in Rhode Island, Connecticut and New York on Tuesday.

The Republican National Convention will be July 15-18 in Milwaukee. The Democratic National Convention will be Aug. 19-22 in Chicago.