Robertson; Forde jump out to leads in county races

Peninsula News Network


Clallam County, WA - Former Clallam County Building Official Rob Robertson has emerged as the front runner in the race for the new elected post of Department of Community Development Director.

Robertson captured nearly 40% of the vote in the Primary election runoff between three candidates running for the job that was approved by voters last year. He captured 4,414 votes in the initial ballot count on Tuesday. The present appointed DCD Director, Bob Martin, was holding onto second with 33.4% of the vote, while John Miller was trailing with just over 3,000 votes. If that margin holds, Martin and Robertson will runoff in November.

The biggest election news of the night came from the race for East End Clallam County Commissioner. Republican Sue Forde picked up a strong 54% of the vote over Democratic incumbent Steve Tharinger. Tharinger trailed by 500 votes in the initial count. Forde had made few public appearances, relying instead on doorbelling and hundreds of yard signs. Tharinger had also done limited campaigning, but will have to increase his efforts as the vote goes countywide in November.

The other Port Angeles races had appeared on the ballot as three way contests, but didn't count, since two of the candidates had dropped out previously. Former Public Works Director Jack Pittis picked up 44.7% of the ballots in the race for PA City Council, with Cherie Kidd at 43.4%. That sets up a competitive race for November.

Incumbent PA School Board President Charles McClain made a strong showing over challenger Pete Peterson, with over 53% of the first ballot count.

In the races for the Crescent School District, it looks like Tracy Grover and Gary Kautz will runoff for Position 1 in November, with John Halberg and Susan Hopper running off for Position 2.

Just over 12,000 ballots were counted on Tuesday. Several thousand more will be processed later this week.


KONP Radio


(Port Angeles) -- Lower Elwha Klallam Executive Director John Miller appears to be the odd man out in the race for the County's first elected Director of Community Development. Primary election results tallied Tuesday show former Building official Rob Robertson leading the DCD race with more than 39 percent of the vote -- and current appointed DCD director Bob Martin received votes from about 33 and a half percent of the ballots tallied. Miller is in third place in the race with 27-point-2 percent of the vote -- about 700 votes behind Martin. The top two vote-getters move onto the November general election ballot.

(Port Angeles) -- Republican challenger Sue Forde has a lead of more than 500 votes in her race against incumbent Democrat Commissioner Steve Tharinger. Forde has 54 percent of the primary election tally, with Tharinger at about 46 percent. The primary is a mere beauty contest for the two Commissioners' candidates, as both will move onto the general election.


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