TOWN OF GENEVA — Mike Mumford will join the board, and a write-in campaign fell short of unseating an incumbent.
On Tuesday night, Mumford was elected supervisor after earning 265 votes. His opponent, former Town Chairman Daniel “Louie” Lauderdale, had 213 votes.
About three weeks ago, former town supervisor Larry Kulik announced that he was running a registered write-in campaign against Gene Decker. On Tuesday night, Decker had 285 votes and there were 170 write-ins. Because of Regional News deadline, the paper was unable to wait to see how many of the write-ins were for Kulik.
“I’m very pleased that the voters responded to all the things I said about where the town has been and where it is going,” Mumford said. “It is going to continue going in that same direction.”
Mumford said he believes he was elected because of the stance he has taken on several key issues.
“I’ve been against a new town hall, I’ve been against Alliant Energy, I’ve been against the fire department that we don’t need,” Mumford said. “I’ve been against water and sewers on the south shore of Lake Como and that’s the way it’s going to be.”
He said when he was campaigning he found many voters were in agreement with him on these issues.
“The main issue that came up was the town hall and the other issue that came up here in the McDonald Road area was the Alliant Energy substation,” Mumford said. “Nobody here wants it, myself included. They want to put 80-foot towers down McDonald Road. I think that would be ludicrous.”
On election night, Mumford had kind words for his opponent.
“I spoke to him at a town board meeting in March,” Mumford said. “I like the guy. He is very personable, and I have nothing against him whatsoever.”
Lauderdale had kind words for his opponent as well.
“I wish Mike the best of luck. I’m confident, just the same the voters were, that he will do a fine job,” Lauderdale said. “I appreciate the fact that he is willing to take on that responsibility, and I’m here to help him in any way possible. Congratulations to him.”
He said he wasn’t sure why the election results went the way they did. He said he simply applied for a job and didn’t get it.
Lauderdale didn’t rule out the possibility of running for public office again in the future. Lauderdale and Mumford ran for town of Geneva Supervisor 4 after incumbent Steve Kukla decided not to seek re-election.
Unsuccessful write-in campaign
Former town supervisor Larry Kulik launched a write-in campaign to unseat incumbent Gene Decker for the Supervisor 3 seat.
The Regional News was unable to reach Decker or Kulik on election night. However, both candidates spoke to the paper prior to the election.
In a letter to the editor in the Lake Geneva Regional News, Kulik outlined his reasons for running.
“The town currently doesn’t have any debt, and I want to keep it that way,” Kulik’s letter states. “Though you may be hearing about the economic recovery that is happening across some parts of the country, I do not see much of it around here.”
In the letter, Kulik wrote that he beat Decker in a previous election. However, he didn’t write that Decker was the one to later unseat him.
“I won the Supervisor No. 3 position on the board four years ago. My opponent was Gene Decker,” Kulik wrote in the letter. “I served for two years. During that time one of the most important issues to come to the board was the police chief position.”
In an earlier interview with the Regional News, Decker said he was surprised that Kulik launched the write-in campaign.
“When I was told on March 8 that Larry Kulik was mounting a write-in campaign, I was surprised. As he said in his letter, he defeated me four years ago. He was the incumbent, and I was a political neophyte. Larry won by three votes,” Decker said.
“What Larry does not mention is that two years ago I won the election by a fairly large margin. What also surprises me is that Larry has absolutely nothing to say about my performance the last two years.”
One of the reasons Kulik launched his write-in campaign is because of concerns of too many board members living in the Lake Como subdivision.
“The area we live in really dictates to us how the majority want their local government to operate. I believe the residents of this town want their taxes to not go up. Our employees, elected officials and appointed personnel know this because most of them live in the town,” Kulik wrote.
Decker said he agreed with Kulik’s position but for different reasons.
“If you look at all the registered voters in Geneva Township and divide them, in a perfect world, the association should have two board members, the south side of Lake Como should have one, the farms to the north and west, one, and Geneva National, one,” Decker told the Regional News.