Key Peninsula residents participated in the Nov. 5 election in high numbers.
Voters selected Peninsula School District board members, Key Peninsula Metropolitan Parks Commission members, a Fire District 16 Commissioner, and two Port of Tacoma Commissioners. A number of advisory votes and initiatives were also on the ballot.
The Key Peninsula has 12,343 registered voters and nearly 47 percent returned ballots in this election. KP voters once again participated at levels higher than most of Pierce County, where about 39 percent returned ballots. For all voters in the Peninsula School District, turnout to elect new school board members was 49.56 percent, again a better rate of return than other districts.
The KP rejected the affirmative action-related Referendum 88 by a 60 percent margin while Initiative 976 was approved by 66 percent of KP voters, demonstrating strong support for $30 car tabs.
In the Peninsula School District election, voters chose Chuck West over Sami Jensen for Position 1, Lori Glover for Position 3 in an uncontested election, and Natalie Wimberley for Position 4, ousting incumbent Leslie Harbaugh. Interim Superintendent Dr. Art Jarvis congratulated the new board members and thanked exiting board members Harbaugh and Marcia Harris for their years of service in a message of appreciation posted on the school board website.
Jarvis also thanked Jensen for her “willingness to enter the political arena and giving your time to our schools.” Jarvis said that there are “major challenges for the board of directors,” including an “expiring operations levy and the construction launch for four new schools.”
The Key Peninsula Metropolitan Parks Commission will have Mark Michel, the current board president, assume Position 3 while Linda Weeks was elected to Position 1. The newly elected commissioners will be sworn in at the January 2020 meeting.
Frank Grubaugh was re-elected to Commissioner Position 1 of Fire District 16 in an unopposed election. There are five commissioners on the board.
Deanna Keller was elected to Port of Tacoma Commissioner Position 3 and Kristin Ang came from behind in late vote counting to win Position 5.
The final results of the election were certified Nov. 25.