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April 4 election results
Boscobel and Grant County
Election Results

BOSCOBEL - Final numbers from last week’s vote were reported at the April 10 meeting of the Boscobel Area District school board.

Overall, the $21.1 million referendum earned 871 yes votes, or 52.5 percent of the vote.

Across the district, however, votes varied. Voters in the Town of Marion and Marietta rejected the referendum by about 57 percent, while 65 percent of voters in Watterstown voted against.

Those loses were offset in towns like Boscobel and Woodman, the Village of Woodman, and the City of Boscobel, where voters approved by large margins. At the end of the day, the measure passed by 84 votes.

What now

District administrator Lisa Wallin-Kapinus reports that the district is currently working on the paperwork to sell their debt for the bonds, which is the first step toward securing the funding for the project.

The first phase of designing the new facility will last until this time next year, and Wallin-Kapinus is requesting input from the public at large.

“We tried to be as transparent as we could throughout the referendum process, and now we are getting phone calls already. Call, email—we’re open to suggestions,” she said.

The district website will be updated, she said, as information is firmed up.

City vs town

Statewide, the State of Wisconsin’s supreme court race re-drew the map from recent elections with a swath of southwest counties, including Grant and Crawford, handing a win to Janet Protasiewicz.

Protasiewicz made no secret of her opposition to Wisconsin’s no-exceptions ban on abortion. Her opponent, former Supreme Court Justice Dan Kelly, was widely seen as supporting the ban.

In Grant County, Protasiewicz beat Kelly, 7,047–6,661 to replace retiring Justice Patience Roggensack. Protasiewicz also defeated Kelly in Lafayette County 2,242–2,174, and in Iowa Couty 5,454–3,108.

A closer look at Grant’s vote totals shows that preferences in the supreme court race broke along municipal type. On aggregate, towns, which make up 42 percent of the county’s voters, chose Kelly by wide margins (57 percent). Cities, which comprise 39 percent, overwhelmingly went for Protasiewicz (60 percent). Grant County’s villages, with just 18 percent of our voters, split 50/50.

Script flipped for Riniker

The same math that hurt Kelly helped District Attorney Lisa Riniker, who defeated former Jefferson County Circuit Judge Jennifer Day, 6,871–6,034 to replace retiring Circuit Judge Robert VanDeHey.

Riniker racked up her win by winning the voters in the townships, getting the most votes in 25 of 33 townships. That led to a 675-vote difference between Riniker and Day in the town vote.

Riniker won 10 of 19 villages and cities, winning despite Day’s outpolling her 1,175–1,054 in Platteville.

She will be Grant County’s first female judge means that Grant County will be getting a new district attorney.

New DA

With Riniker’s election, under state law Gov. Tony Evers will appoint the next district attorney.

Unlike most other county constitutional officers, the district attorney must meet certain qualifications. Under state statute, “no person is eligible to hold the office of district attorney unless he or she is licensed to practice law in this state and resides in the prosecutorial unit from which he or she was elected.”

Riniker, is a Republican, as are all Grant County’s other elected officials.

Other vote totals

The two statewide constitutional referenda and the advisory referendum all passed in Grant, Lafayette and Iowa counties.

The first question, cash bail for incarcerated people, was approved in Grant County 8,457–4,425, in Lafayette County 2,764–1,451, and in Iowa County 5,035–3,066.

The second measure, to allow judges to take into account past records of defendants in setting bail was approved 8,706–4,332 in Grant County, 2,843–1,401 in Lafayette County, and 5,296–2,853 in Iowa County.

The advisory referendum to require able-bodied welfare recipients to work was approved in Grant County 11,240–2,166, in Lafayette County 3,679–624, and in Iowa County 6,586–1,733.