In the Nov. 6 general election, the county prosecuting attorney and sheriff were re-elected, Carolyn Jewett became the next district court judge and a new tax was approved to fund local affordable housing projects.
About 84 percent of county voters turned out for this election, which was certified on Nov. 27.
San Juan County Prosecuting Attorney Randall Gaylord secured his sixth consecutive re-election, after initially winning the seat in 1994 with about 63 percent of the votes. Local attorney Nicholas Power ran against him for the partisan position that holds a four-year term.
San Juan County Sheriff Ronald Krebs won with roughly 58 percent of the votes in his first re-election, after initially winning the bid for public office in 2014. San Juan County Deputy Jeff Asher ran against him for the nonpartisan seat, with a four-year term.
County deputy prosecutor Jewett was elected over local attorney Steve Brandli for San Juan County District Court Judge with 65 percent of the votes. The position is nonpartisan and holds a four-year term.
“I am honored,” said Jewett. “Thank you to everyone who came out and voted. If there’s anything I’ve learned during my campaign, it’s what an amazing and vibrant community we have, and I’m so grateful I had the opportunity to meet so many new people.”
Jewett will replace current San Juan County District Court Judge Stewart R. Andrew when he retires at the end of 2018 after serving nearly two decades on the bench. Brandli applauded her win.
“My congratulations go to Carolyn Jewett who ran a tough and effective campaign,” said Brandli. “I want to thank the many community members, friends and family who supported me these last few months.”
A tax to fund local affordable housing projects passed with 55 percent of the votes. Thirty days after Nov. 27, the county will tax 0.5 percent on the sale and purchase of real estate through a Real Estate Excise Tax, or REET. The revenue will be used to develop and preserve housing for very low-, low- and moderate-income residents and those with special needs.
“YES for Homes is thrilled that San Juan County voters recognized the need to address affordable housing,” said a representative with the campaign. “The new home fund is a positive step in providing more homes for many of our citizens.”
The following candidates were re-elected in uncontested races: San Juan County District 3 Councilman Jamie Stephens; Assessor John Kulseth; Auditor Milene Henry; Clerk Lisa Henderson; Superior Court Judge Kathryn Loring; and Treasurer Rhonda Pederson.
State election results also show that U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell, a Democrat, beat Republican Susan Hutchinson; Rep. Rick Larsen, D-Everett, defeated Libertarian Brian Luke for the U.S. Congressional seat for the second district of Washington state; and Democrat Debra Lekanoff won over Republican Michael Petrish for the Washington state Legislature seat for position 1 of District 40. Rep. Kristine Lytton, D-Anacortes, currently holds the latter position but will retire at the end of the year.