Chelan County Commission: Walter v Schoessler; England v Signorelli
WENATCHEE — Two Chelan County commissioners easily retained their positions, posting decisive victories Tuesday over their challengers.
Ron Walter received 66 percent of the vote in his race with Gary Schoessler for the District 1 position.
District 3 Commissioner Doug England won with 61 percent of the vote over Mary Signorelli.
“We’re honored and humbled that citizens are going trust us for another four years,” Walter said about the votes he and England received. Walter celebrated his victory with other Republicans at the Chelan County Republican Party office in Wenatchee.
Walter, a Wenatchee cherry orchardist, won a fourth term as commissioner. Schoessler, a Malaga orchardist, was elected Wenatchee mayor in 1999, but removed from office after four months for failing to meet residency requirements. He was critical of the commission’s past work and said there are ways to cut spending and use money more wisely.
Walter said the commission was forced by the economy to make tough choices. Commissioners have held the line on wages, health care benefits and found new ways to control costs, he said.
“I think we stayed real consistent. People know what to expect from us,” Walter said about his work with fellow commissioners England and Keith Goehner.
England, a Manson apple grower and manager of Manson Growers, won a second term as commissioner against Signorelli, a popular Chelan business owner.
England said he didn’t have any idea how he would do in the race. The decisive win tells him the commission is on the right track, he said.
“I think our major achievement is that we’ve been able to work together, stop the bleeding and get things turned around. There’s a lot yet to do,” said England, who stayed at home to watch election results on television and his computer.
He said he wants to continue the work he’s done in his first term to maintain a balanced budget and work closely with the many agencies important to the county’s future. He’s more interested in stability than change, he said, and wants the county to stay as safe and sound for his 22 grandchildren as it has been for him.
Signorelli, a Democrat, was critical of the composition of the commission, which is made up of three orchardists. The county’s population has become more diverse over the years, she said, and needs a commission with a more diverse make-up.
She said she was very grateful for the opportunity to run and has no regrets. “I wish all the commissioners the best of luck,” she said.
Rick Steigmeyer: 664-7151