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Who will be Taylor's next mayor? Write-in candidate unsure if he will accept position

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news Dickinson, 58602

Dickinson North Dakota 1815 1st Street West 58602

Russ Myran, a two-term Taylor city councilman, received the most write-in votes in last week's mayoral election, but he doesn't know if he will accept the position.

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"I'm a little surprised that I haven't gotten a call from someone to see if I would accept," he said. "I didn't file for my council position either time I was elected, but I won because people wrote me in then too. I was on the board eight years and decided not to run for city board when my position was up for re-election this year."

Instead, he was elected through write-in votes when no one filed to run for mayor of Taylor this year.

A total of 71 write-in votes were cast in the mayoral race with Myran capturing 50 of them.

Ray Fettig received 12 votes, Travis Olson received three votes, and one vote each was cast for Dennis Sievers, Jim Wolf, Marlys Vaagen and Nickolas Songer. There also were two unqualified votes, meaning they were either fictitious names or illegible.

The Stark County Auditor's Office said it will be up to the city of Taylor to decide how to fill the mayor's position.

All of the city council members, including newly-elected Councilmen Ronald Luff and Aaron Gjermundson, were contacted for comment on the city's mayoral situation, but they did not return calls.

Myran was elected to replace Wolf, who decided not to run for re-election after 12 years as mayor. Prior to that, he also served 16 years on city council.

Wolf has resided in Taylor for 37 years with his wife and operates Jim's Repair & Refrigeration & Heating in town.

"I had been on the board for all of those years and thought that it was time for me to leave," Wolf said. "But I know it is tough to find people who are willing to commit all of the time that the mayor has to put in, even in small towns."

Stark County Commissioner Jay Elkin of Taylor acknowledged that running for public office isn't easy.

"I'm uncertain of why no one ran," he said. "But I do know that it is difficult to find people to run for any public office, especially now that challenges are quite great, as there seems to be changes occurring rapidly in the area."

Myran said he will have to decide soon if he wants the position because he believes Tuesday is the swearing-in of the mayor and new city council members.

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