Tuesday marks primary election day for Peoria City Council elections. Fourteen candidates were on the ballot vying for just ten spots on the spring ballot. Ultimately, they are all looking to secure five at-large council seats.
5,709 ballots were counted from Tuesday’s election.
Here are the candidates who received enough votes to proceed to the next election:
Rita Ali – 27.56%
Beth Jensen – 12.48%
Sid Ruckriegel – 10.25%
Zachary Oyler – 9.97%
Andre Allen – 8.33%
John Kelly – 8.28%
Peter Kobak – 7.31%
Beth Akeson – 4.69%
Branden Martin – 4.57%
Aaron Chess Jr. – 1.76%
These candidates did not receive enough votes to appear on the ballot in April.
Kevin Sibley – 1.37%
Janice Louise Lindsay – 1.33%
Mary Nell Hayes – 0.73%
Roberta English (Withdrew) – 0.65%
James Golden – 0.73%
The total number of voters for mail-in and early voting are 1,928 of 71,437 registered voters.
Peoria has not had a primary election for city council with 5 open seats since 2007. With such a large number of candidates a number of local organizations have held public forums. Long time League of Women Voters, Cheryl Budzinski, said with so many candidates it’s important they all have an equal opportunity to get their message out to the public.
“I think there were a lot of differing opinions, we had quite an age range this time and I think it was exciting that we have so many good candidates.” said Budzinski
She said community members had many concerns but most involved economics.
“It was mostly economics and budget. What would they do? What are their ideas, their new ideas in how to handle the budget issue and also the pension costs.” said Budzinski
There was a rise in voter turnout this year. The Election Commission Board said the projected around 9.5 – 10% of the 71,000 eligible voters and the final numbers showed 10.6% of voters came out.
“The last time we had a city council primary where there was five seats up we at like 9.5 but we were probably at 66 or 67 or 67 thousand registered voters. The total number of voters is going to be greater than it was last time because we have more people registered to vote.” said Executive Director Thomas Bride
Bride also said around 2,000 people voted early in Tuesday’s primary.
The Consolidated General Election will be held on Tuesday, April 2, 2019.