EAST WENATCHEE — The races for Eastmont School Board are settled, with voters officially electing two new members.

Jason Heinz beat board President Annette Eggers with 61.39% of the vote. The election to replace Dave Piepel is closer, though Joy Dawe still maintains a 102 vote lead over John “Stew” Steward Jr. Both vote margins exceed the estimated 60 ballots left to count in Douglas County.

On multiple occasions, Steward said he would not seek a recount. In Washington, an automatic machine recount is only conducted when the difference is within 2,000 votes and half a percent of the vote total as well.

“We might still receive a few military and overseas ballots in the mail or ballots that were postmarked on or before Election Day. They can be counted through Nov. 22 which is the day before we certify the election on Nov. 23,” Douglas County Auditor Thad Duvall said in an email. “However it is not very likely that we would receive enough additional ballots to change the election results for the school board races.”

Following the county, the Secretary of State will certify results Dec. 2. Eastmont’s new school board members will be sworn in during the Dec. 13 meeting at Cascade Elementary School.

According to Superintendent Garn Christensen, the district invited Douglas County Superior Court Judge Brian Huber to conduct the swearing-in. Once sworn in, Christensen said the new members exchange seats with the members whose terms have expired.

Heinz and Dawe will join Meaghan Vibbert, Whitney Smith and Cindy Wright on the board, with four of the five members in their first term. Wright has served on the board since August 2007, while Vibbert and Smith were elected in 2019.

One of the first actions the board will take is confirmation of a president, vice president and other positions on the board. Eggers served as board president, meaning a new one will be selected. This will be conducted during the Dec. 13 meeting as well.

The two new members will join the board amid a superintendent search to replace the retiring Christensen.

The first months of Dawe’s and Heinz’s tenure will include selecting initial candidates, conducting preliminary interviews, final interviews and candidate site visits. According to the board’s schedule, the plan is for the eventual successor to sign their contract three months after the new board members take over.

Mitchell Roland: (509) 661-5201

roland@wenatcheeworld.com or

on Twitter @roland_mitchell

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