Exarchos punches ticket for November

BELLEFONTE — The races are set.

In the race for Centre County commissioner, all three incumbents advanced. Democrats Mark Higgins and Michael Pipe ran unopposed. They’ll be joined on the November ballot by fellow commissioner Steve Dershem. Chris Exarchos punched his ticket for November. At 74, the GOP candidate is looking to return to the board of commissioners.

Dershem led the way on Tuesday, with 6,336 votes. Exarchos was the GOP runner-up, tallying 4,227. He was followed by Pat Romano, Jr. (3,451), and Vicki Wedler (3,049). Penn State student Tanner Day finished last in his first race (1,488).

Vote totals are unofficial until certified.

Pipe tallied the most votes (9,171) and Higgins was second (8,931).

Come November, the commissioner’s race should be an interesting one. Each candidate has an impressive resume.

Higgins and Pipe has run a joint campaign for re-election. Pipe is the current board chair and is seeking his third term. Higgins is running for his second term.

Dershem is running for his fifth term on the board. He was first elected in 2003 and served as board chair in his third term.

Exarchos, 74, is looking for his third term as commissioner. Previously, he served from 2004 to 2007 and from 2012 to 2015.

County row office races were all unopposed in the primary.

The race for seats on the Bellefonte school board was a tight one. All candidates cross-filed and there were a total of seven candidates. On the Republican ballot, results looked like this: Donna Smith led the way with 1,280 votes or 15.70 percent of the vote. She was followed by: Mark William Badger (1,207, 14.80 percent); Rob Pacella (1,159, 14.21 percent); Julie Fitzgerald (1,148, 14.08 percent); Max Kroell (1,113, 13.65 percent); Kim Hearn (1,091, 13.38 percent); Robert Lumley-Sapanski (1,050, 12.88 percent).

Appearing on the ballot in the fall will be Smith, Badger, Pacella, Fitzgerald and Kroell.

On the Democratic side of the ballot, the top vote-getters were: Donna Smith (1,020, 18.40 percent); Julie Fitzgerald (1,006, 18.16 percent); Kimberly Hearn (904, 16.32 percent); Mark William Badger (715, 12.91 percent); Robert Lumley-Sapanski (712, 12.85 percent); Max Kroell (627, 11.32 percent); Rob Pacella (521, 9.41 percent).

On the Republican side, moving on will be Fitzgerald, Smith, Hearn, Badger and Lumley-Sapanski.

Smith, Badger and Fitzgerald will be listed as both Democrats and Republicans in November.

Election Day 2019 will take place on Tuesday, Nov. 5.