The Race For Top Badge
Candidates to respond to community questions.
By N3 Editorial Staff
Two candidates possessing strong credentials and solid experience are heading for an August 2nd showdown at the polls when Newaygo County voters will enter the tallying sites of their precincts and decide who will be their Sheriff for the next four years.
Current Sheriff Pat Hedlund and White Cloud and Grant Police Chief Bob Mendham are locked in a 2 man race for the position Mr. Hedlund was chosen to assume following the mid-term retirement of Mike Mercer in December of 2014.
It has been a contentious contest thus far as,,,
... supporters on both sides have flooded social media to post opinions and comments with an emphasis on the news stories that have erupted in recent months.
Undersheriff Brian Boyd’s resignation sparked speculation about conflict within the department and was followed by the suspension of Lieutenant Chad Palmiter for what Mr. Hedlund termed in a press release as possible violation of election laws and department policies.
While Mr. Palmiter’s name was never released by the Sheriff’s Office the social media firestorm that followed focused on supposition that one of the primary reasons for being taken off duty was Mr. Palmiter’s attendance at an event held by MPH Trucking firm in Fremont though defenders of the action have indicated other reasons for the suspension.
Neither the Sheriff nor Lieutenant Palmiter has commented publicly on the matter since the suspension.
Mr. Hedlund was chosen to head up the department by a panel of three as prescribed by section 168.209 of the Michigan Election Law. Prosecuting Attorney Robert Springstead, Laurel Breuker, who was serving as the County Clerk at that time and Probate Court Judge Graydon Dimkoff comprised the committee and held public interviews with the five applicants. In addition to Mr. Hedlund, Mr. Mendham, and Mr. Boyd, recently retired Judge Terrence Thomas and former county commissioner Vern Willett sat through a series of questions from the threesome who eventually decided on Mr. Hedlund.
The editorial staff at Near North Now will be submitting questions to the two candidates as the first in a series of articles involving some of the contested races in our area. The questions are being gathered from community members and will be delivered to the candidates this week.
It is our hope the information provided by the answers given will help those voters who may not have already decided on their chosen candidate.
And despite the unwavering viewpoints being expressed throughout the county, there remain a large percentage of voters who have not yet made up their minds on how to mark their ballot.
Look for the article coming soon to the Pulse pages of N3.
And make sure you vote for pity’s sake.
It is, after all, one of the few occasions when opinions can be rendered without words.
“Every election is determined by the people who show up.”- Larry J. Sabato
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