Bellevue special election will mean greater expense for Sarpy County -
Published Friday, July 26, 2013 at 2:57 am / Updated at 3:01 am
Bellevue special election will mean greater expense for Sarpy County

A special election to fill a vacancy on the Bellevue City Council will end up costing Sarpy County, too.

Election Commissioner Wayne Bena asked the County Board to restore $1,100 to his budget to administer the election, which he said will double his overtime costs. The combined overtime rate for all election-day employees is $127 an hour, he said.

The Bellevue City Council voted this month to hold a special election for the Ward 1 seat vacated by Scott Houghtaling, who resigned in March for a job in Ohio.

The council deadlocked on a replacement. Three council members blocked Mayor Rita Sanders’ appointee, Mike Hall, saying they preferred local businessman Dave Compton.

They also rejected Bill Bonitz, whom Sanders put up when it became clear Hall wouldn’t be approved.

The election commissioner can recover most of the costs of administering an election from the political subdivisions that participate. But personnel costs are borne by the county.

Bena estimates he’ll bill the city $7,000 for the Oct. 15 special election, assuming full turnout in the ward, minus the candidate filing fees.

And that should cover it, Belle­vue City Administrator Dan Berlowitz said.

“I wouldn’t foresee any significant expense on top of that,” he said.

Compton, Steve Dawes, former Bellevue building inspector Steven Carmichael and former Councilman Chuck Fredrick already have filed, according to Bena’s website. The filing deadline is Aug. 2.

Contact the writer: Cody Winchester    |   402-444-1216    |  

Cody Winchester is a metro-area watchdog reporter. He covers Douglas and Sarpy Counties.

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