Steamboat Springs School Board still without candidates

Application deadline is Aug. 26

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— Less than two weeks before the Steamboat Springs School Board election filing deadline Aug. 26, there are no declared candidates to fill the three board seats that are up for re-election.

Board members Lisa Brown, District 2, and Laura Anderson, District 5, announced last month that they will not be seeking a second term. Board President Robin Crossan, District 4, has not said whether she will be on the ballot. Crossan could not be reached for comment Monday.

As the Aug. 26 filing deadline approaches, board members Brian Kelly and Denise Connelly are hoping candidates step forward to run so a majority of the board doesn’t have to be appointed.

“It would be a heck of an embarrassment to the community, to say the least, if we don’t have anyone step forward,” Kelly said. “I think the community values education, and I really hope we have some candidates.”

Connelly said she’s been reaching out for months to community members and her friends to find viable candidates but hasn’t had any success.

“Immediately, they say, ‘I cannot serve,’ so I ask them if they know anyone else,” she said. “I’m very concerned we don’t have any candidates today. Serving on the School Board is a great opportunity to make some positive changes.”

Meanwhile in South Routt, Oak Creek residents Byron Dean and Jules Palyo have announced they would like to fill the District 4 South Routt School Board seat being vacated by Linda Long, who announced last month that she would not seek another term on the board she has served on since 1995.

Dean taught a variety of subjects at Soroco High School for more than 30 years, and Palyo, who owns Flat Tops Ranch Supply, has been an active volunteer in the South Routt School District for 11 years.

“I feel I just have something to add,” said Palyo, who has three children attending South Routt schools. “I saw there was an opening, and I thought I would help out if I can.”

Palyo, 43, unsuccessfully ran against Long for the seat in 2007.

Dean, 60, who retired last year from the school district he began working for in 1980, said he would like to continue to serve as a board member.

“I still feel like I have something to contribute to the district,” Dean said. “I believe we have one of the best small districts in the state.”

Brett Mason, Dean’s son-in-law, serves on the board for District 7 and will seek re-election along with board President Tim Corrigan, District 6. Both men are running unopposed.

In Hayden, board member Sharon Nereson has picked up an application to file for re-election. Vance Fulton has not announced whether he will seek his second full term to the board.

All Routt County school board candidates have until Aug. 26 to pick up an application from a district office and gather the necessary signatures of registered voters to be placed on the ballot.

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