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Incumbents prevail in fire, port races

Unofficially, both Darla Hartley and Paul Golnik look poised to extend their terms on the South Kitsap Fire and Rescue Board of Commissioners, while Bill Mahan is assured another six years as a Port of Bremerton commissioner.

“Thanks to the election gods, I didn’t have an opponent,” said Mahan, who ran unopposed for another term on Tuesday, losing only 2 percent of the vote to write-in candidates.

As of Thursday afternoon, Hartley was leading her challenger — Manchester resident Gerald Preuss — for Position 3 by more than 10 percentage points. With 48 percent of the ballots counted, Hartley had 8,828 votes to Preuss’ 6,611.

Hartley, who has served on the board since 1988, said she was looking forward to another chance to serve the South Kitsap community.

“I feel I bring diversity and another perspective to the board,” said Hartley, who is currently the only woman commissioner on the five-seat board.

Olalla resident Golnik was even more comfortably ahead of his challenger than Hartley, leading Phil Seratt by more than 20 percentage points.

Golnik, who was appointed by the board to Rick Metzger’s vacant Position 5 seat in February, said if he was re-elected he was looking forward to reviewing the feedback from the recently formed Citizen Review Budget Committee, which was presented to the board Monday night.

“We should have some good suggestions from (the members) that hopefully we will be able to implement,” Golnik said, describing many of the members as savvy business owners that he believed would provide helpful insight.

As of 4:30 p.m. Thursday, Golnik had 8,802 votes to Seratt’s 5,599.

Although Metzger’s term still had two years remaining when he stepped down in January, Golnik had to be elected by the voters before completing it.

Mahan, currently president of the Port of Bremerton’s board, will serve another six-year term as the representative for District No. 3, which includes portions of South Kitsap, Southwest Bremerton, and Seabeck.

Now that he was re-elected, next year he can begin receiving the newly-approved port commissioner salary of $6,000 a year, along with an annual raise of $1,200.

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