Time untouchedThe majority of Stark and Billings county voters don’t want to see the area change from Mountain to Central time, according to results from Tuesday’s election.
The majority of Stark and Billings county voters don’t want to see the area change from Mountain to Central time, according to results from Tuesday’s election.
The measure was voted down 1,366 to 3,790 in Stark County and 48 to 222 in Billings County.
If the measure would have passed, the counties would have had to petition the U.S. Department of Transportation.
Once the petition is sent, DOT’s General Counsel Office reviews the request, and if they deem the change to “serve the convenience of commerce,” a proposal is made and opened for public comment.
If Billings County had passed the vote and Stark County did not, Billings County would not have petitioned the DOT, according to a previous Dickinson Press article.
While the measure was voted down, it was important that people could vote on the issue, said Bev Olejnicak, chairperson of the Time Change Volunteer Committee, a group who supported the change.
Dickinson resident Craig Kappel, said he’s glad it will stay the same.
“I didn’t think it was going to change,” Kappel said, adding it may come up again, but “not for a while.”
Olejnicak said while she was a proponent of the change, she had mixed feelings going into Tuesday’s election.
“I know the people of Dickinson, I didn’t expect a lot of them to vote for it, because I know this is a community where people really don’t like change,” Olejnicak said. “I used to be a small business owner, and just working with people in business, I know how hard it is to have to deal with the time difference.
“I think that the people, they have chosen and I think it was good that it was on the ballot, that we got to decide and we got to vote, and I don’t think Dickinson is ready for that change yet. Maybe in the future, maybe.”
County residents also voted down the measure by about 1,000 votes in June 2000, said Stark County Auditor Alice Schulz in a previous Press article.
Mercer County residents voted in favor of changing to Central time in 2002.