Absentee voter deadlines approaching

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— Hayden and Oak Creek voters who want to cast ballots early in their municipal elections have until Friday to pick up applications.

"There are people that for whatever reason prefer to vote absentee," Oak Creek Town Clerk Karen Halterman said. "There are elderly people who its hard for them to get out."

The Hayden and Oak Creek town board elections are April 4.

Those wishing to vote early must request and return an absentee application to town hall by 5 p.m. Friday. The town will then send the ballot to the absentee voter. It is the voter's responsibility, Halterman said, to make sure the ballot makes it back to the town hall by 7 p.m. April 4.

The deadline to register to vote has already passed. To vote legally, residents also must already have their current address information registered with the Routt County Clerk and Recorder's Office.

Residents can vote in person from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. April 4 at the Hayden and Oak Creek town halls.

Both the Hayden and Oak Creek elections are contested.

Hayden will be voting for a new mayor and trustees to fill three Town Board seats.

Former Hayden mayor Rich--ard "Festus" Hagins and current trustee Joe Schminkey are running for mayor.

Current Hayden Mayor Char--les Grobe, former trustee Jim Haskins and planning commissioners Andrea Hayden and Tom Rogalski are running for trustee.

Oak Creek will elect a mayor and four Town Board members.

Incumbent Kathy "Cargo" Rodeman is seeking her third term as Oak Creek mayor. She is running against longtime Oak Creek resident Bill Babcock.

Nine residents are vying for four Oak Creek Town Board positions. The three incumbents seeking re-election are Tom Bleuer, John Crawford and J. Elliott. Other candidates are Ann Kirton, Angie Karlj KenCairn, Dave Fisher, Kelly Lipsie, Chuck Wisecup and Stacy Hayes.

-- To reach Matt Stensland, call 871-4210 or e-mail mstensland@steamboatpilot.com

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