Long-time Benton County Fair Board leader Dick Meyer and local truck owner/operator and frequent ACT 1 performer Rick Primmer are the two candidates on the Republican ballot for Benton County Supervisor District 2 position.

The winner of that primary contest would face a November general election contest for the District 2 Supervisor seat against either Vinton Mayor John Watson, or Terry Hertle.

Watson has served as Vinton's mayor since the mid-1980s, except for a four-year period when his job at the U.S. Post Office required him to step down. Dave Vermedahl, the current supervisor, served as Vinton's mayor during those four years. He left the mayor's office to become a county supervisor. If Watson wins, he would make the same transition.

Hertle is a long-time area farmer and Democratic party leader. He decided on Friday evening to seek the office and announced his decision during the county Democratic convention.

Some other familiar names will be on the ballots for the Democratic and Republican primary elections in June.

Don Frese of Norway, who lost to Ron Buch by 220 votes in the 2008 District 3 supervisor race, is again running. His opponent in the Democratic primary is John Long.

Long, a 1973 Vinton graduate, is a retired teacher and administrator. He spent 25 years at Belle Plaine before serving as an administrator at Anamosa and HLV, retiring in 2011. He now works for Freidman Distributing in Belle Plaine. His wife still teaches; the couple has three children, one at Coe and two in Belle Plaine High School.

Frese is a long-time Norway farmer and activist. He served on the Norway School Board during what is now known as the school's famous "Final Season," in 1991, when the boys baseball team won the state championship in the school's final year before consolidating with Benton Community. His son, Eric, played on that team.

The lone Republican candidate for county supervisor from the southern district is Patrice Smith of Keystone, a long-time employee of the USDA in Iowa who recently retired. She had been the acting director of the Benton County FSA office in Vinton.

Buch and Vermedahl were both elected as supervisors for the first time in 2000; both announced last year that they would not seek re-election after serving three 4-year terms.

Sheriff's race rematch

In 2008, Randy Forsyth won his second term as sheriff by defeating deputy Vince Snyder. Snyder is challenging Forsyth again this year. In 2008, Forsyth won by a 57-43 percent margin.

Auditor files papers for re-election; no GOP candidate announced yet

Auditor Jill Marlow, who ran unopposed in 2008, is the first candidate to file papers for the 2012 primary.

Melissa Mosher, is planning to run as a Republican candidate, she is currently the manager at John's Qwik Stop in Vinton.

While most of the candidates mentioned above have spoken about their campaigns to county party leaders, the only one who had filed a nominating petition by Monday, March 12, is Marlow.

Any qualified person may file papers for any county office by March 28. For more information on candidate requirements, see the Iowa Secretary of State's Candidate Guide.

Many of the candidates met party activists during the county convention which took place Saturday.

Click HERE for a list of Benton County voting precincts, as well as a description of the three supervisor districts.

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Comments (2)

Good luck John, I am happy to leave my party to vote for you to be supervisor.
By: Vinton Resident on March 12th 2:33pm
Describing Rick Primmer as a truck driver ignores his considerable business experience. He owns a local trucking company and other enterprises.
By: Barry Adams on March 12th 4:56pm

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