The 2021 local elections are just getting started, and for Rocky Mountain College students this means a chance to affect how the Billings community grows.
These City Council members influence the public, secure job growth, help provide affordable housing, work on access to outdoor recreation, and provide public safety funding. With the Rocky Mountain College campus lying within Ward 4, these issues affect your life on campus and your life in the community after college.
The election will include voting for City Council members, Mayor, and a Municipal Judge. Mayor Bill Cole and Judge Sheila R. Kohler are running unopposed, but there are 14 other candidates running in this year’s City Council races. There are also two ballot measures: a recreational marijuana ordinance and a public safety mill levy. Election day falls on Tuesday, Nov. 2 with absentee ballots being mailed out on Oct. 13. Everyone will receive an absentee ballot for this election.
City Council members are limited to serving two four-year terms. As a result, one City Council position is available every two years in each of the five wards creating contested races. Ward 1 candidates are Ed Gullick and Stephanie Kruger, Ward 2 candidates are incumbent Frank Ewalt and Jennifer Owen, Ward 3 candidates are incumbent Denise Joy and Charlie Loveridge, Ward 4 candidates are Tim Warburton, Mary Hernandez, and Danel Tidswell, and Ward 5 candidates are Tom Rupsis, Dennis L. Ulvestad, and Fred Wilburn. Rocky Mountain College is also located in Ward 4!
Please reference the Voter’s Guide to get to know more about the candidates in your ward. All candidates were reached out to via email and phone to participate in this voter’s guide. The responses included are the words of candidates who responded.
Current City Councilors whose seats will be up for election in 2023 are Kendra Shaw of ward one, Roy Neese of ward two, Danny Choriki of ward three, Pam Purition of Ward four, and Mike Boyette of ward five.
Voter registration forms can be found on the Yellowstone County Elections Office web page or in the library on campus. You must register before election day. To register to vote in Montana you must meet three qualifications: be eighteen before election day, a Montana resident thirty days prior to the election, and a citizen of the United States. Residency means living in Montana, therefore your dorm address counts. Just make sure you are only registered to vote in one state!
Additional information regarding Montana elections can be found on the Yellowstone County Elections Office website along with the Billing City Council website.