WENATCHEE — With all but a handful of ballots counted, Shon Smith will be the newest member of the Chelan County Board of Commissioners.
It was a narrow victory, but Tuesday’s tabulation of ballots gave the owner of the Wok-About Grill restaurants a 330-vote lead — less than one percentage point — over Leavenworth City Councilmember Anne Hessburg. Just 50 ballots remain to be assessed, according to the Chelan County Auditor's Office.
Smith ran as a Republican, and Hessburg, a professional environmental planner, as an independent. Both were seeking the commissioner post being vacated by Bob Bugert, another independent, who beat Smith by 510 votes to win the seat back in 2018.
Smith’s win puts the three-member board entirely back in Republican hands after four years. His margin over Hessburg was even slimmer than the one that gave Bugert the commissioner chair in 2018: 0.99 percent this year compared to 1.6 percent in the last election.
The Board of Commissioners is the legislative body of the county, setting policy and budgets for every government department and enacting county code. Commissioners are chosen in the primary by voters in one of three districts, but must campaign for votes countywide in the general election. Smith will represent District 2, which encompasses Cashmere, Leavenworth and much of western Chelan County.
In another local win for establishment Republicans, Chelan County GOP secretary Marty Young will be the newest clerk of the Superior Court. Young, a DSHS program specialist, beat another independent candidate, deputy clerk Sandra Arechiga, who's worked in the clerk's office for eight years. He held a margin of 479 votes out of more than 32,000 cast, or 50.64 percent to 49.17.
The clerk’s office maintains the records of Superior Court cases, and handles jury selection, licensing, and civil orders. The election results are due to be certified to the Secretary of State’s office one week from now.