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Published: Wednesday, 10/6/2004

Ida Township: 4 of 5 board races may result in changes amid pressing issues


IDA - Change is not a common thing in a township that doesn't have a single stoplight, but change is what will happen after voters in Ida Township cast their ballots Nov. 2 in local township races.

As many as four of the five faces on the Ida Township Board could change this November, as township supervisor Larry Metz, treasurer Denise Horner, and trustee Ruth Eipperle step aside to make way for their electoral successors.

Township clerk Donald Appleman, 74, is the only board member without opposition next month.

The township faces a number of pressing issues, such as continually deteriorating roads and an ever-expanding legislative attack on the state revenue-sharing funds that make up a large portion of the local budget.

But the outgoing board has addressed a number of the township's pressing needs over the last four years, including construction of a township hall and branch library, renovation of the township's fire station, and purchase of land along Morocco Road for the eventual construction of another fire station. The township has been working to bring municipal water from Monroe to serve Ida Public Schools and the surrounding neighborhood.

Voters will choose between two men seeking to become Ida Township's next supervisor as Democrat Ronald Iott, 55, of Douglas Road in Ida faces off against Republican Greg Lane, 43, of Albain Road in Petersburg. Mr. Iott is a self-employed contractor who is finishing up his first term as a township trustee while Mr. Lane works as a manager at the Fermi II Nuclear Power Plant and is making his first bid for public office.

Voters also must make a choice in a partisan race for township treasurer, where two political newcomers and neighbors are vying for the right to succeed Mrs. Horner, who's chosen to retire.

Republican Sherry Hilkens, 42, and Democrat Leonard Pennington, 37, are making their first runs for public office and live near each other along Jackman Road. Township treasurers are responsible for collecting taxes and overseeing the township's finances and accounts.

With Mrs. Eipperle stepping down and Mr. Iott seeking to become township supervisor, three men will compete for their two open seats. Republican Elmer Bowman, 67, of Douglas Road, will make his second consecutive attempt to win a township trustee seat, this time facing fellow Republican E. Scott Desbrough, 37, of Lewis Avenue, and Democrat Randy Stanifer, 45, of Ida West Road.

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