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updated: 3/19/2014 2:27 PM

Incumbents come out strong in McHenry County Board GOP races

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  • Robert Nowak

    Robert Nowak

  • Andrew Gasser

    Andrew Gasser

  • Joseph Gottemoller

    Joseph Gottemoller

  • John Jung

    John Jung

  • Michael Rein

    Michael Rein

  • Michele Aavang

    Michele Aavang

  • Larry W. Smith

    Larry W. Smith


McHenry County Board Dist. 1:

With all precincts reporting, unofficial vote totals show incumbent Robert Nowak, 61, of Lake in the Hills and Andrew Gasser, 41, of Fox River Grove won the Republican nods for McHenry County Board District 1.

Nowak garnered 2,252 votes, while Gasser grabbed 2,120 votes. Challenger David Stieper, 50, of Barrington Hills lost with 1,548 votes.

District 1 includes Algonquin, Barrington Hills, Cary, Fox River Grove and Lake in the Hills.

Nowak, a homebuilder who was elected to the county board in 2009, worked 23 years with the village of Cary as its building, planning and zoning director. He supports fairness in property tax appraisals by reducing the state multiplier, or equalization factor, a tool used to bring all property to a uniform level of assessment.

Gasser, a retired Air Force officer, favors reducing the size of county government by automation, consolidating services and using technology to cut costs.

McHenry County Board Dist. 3:

With all precincts counted, unofficial vote totals showed incumbent Joseph Gottemoller and Donald Kopsell won the Republican nomination for two District 3 seats on the McHenry County Board.

Gottemoller led with 2,457 votes, followed by Kopsell's 1,822 votes. Challengers Nancy Gonsiorek garnered 1,719 votes and Sarah Jansen received 1,585 votes.

Gottemoller, a real estate and zoning attorney, was elected to the board in 2012. He has served as chairman of the county board's planning and development committee, which has overseen review of the proposed Unified Development ordinance.

Kopsell, a Vietnam War veteran, lost his 2013 re-election bid as Nunda Township highway commissioner. He previously served in that post 16 years.

The two will face off against Democratic challenger and former county board member Kathleen Bergan Schmidt in the Nov. 4 general election.

The district includes all of Nunda Township, southeastern McHenry and northeastern Algonquin townships, including all or parts of Crystal Lake, McHenry, Prairie Grove and Lakemoor.

McHenry County Board Dist. 5:

John Jung Jr., 65, the board's current vice chairman, and political newcomer Michael Rein, 49, a chiropractor, won the Republican nomination for McHenry County Board District 5.

With all precincts reporting, unofficial vote totals showed Jung leading with 2,148 votes, followed by Rein with 1,964 votes, while Zane Seipler, 40, collected 892 votes.

Jung, a board member for 18 years and a small-business owner, said he wants to continue the financial progress he helped make and look at other ways to adjust costs in the county.

Rein said he wants to lower taxes in the county and possibly cut expenses related to employee health care plans.

The two men will face Democrat Paula Yensen, a board incumbent.

McHenry County Board Dist. 6:

The Republican primary in District 6 features incumbents Michele Aavang of Greenwood and Ersel Schuster of Woodstock along with Larry W. Smith of Harvard, a political newcomer.

With 29 of 31 precincts reporting, unofficial vote totals showed Aavang leading with 3,011 votes, followed by Smith with 2,531 votes, and Schuster with 2,455 votes.

Aavang, 53, a farmer, is finishing her first 2-year term on the county board, and she has her sights set on encouraging economic growth while protecting the county's natural resources, including a projected water shortage in the county by 2050.

Smith, 58, a real estate broker, vows to be fiscally responsible, to attend all board and related meetings, and to be responsive to the public's concerns.

Schuster, 74, a board member since 1986, hopes to increase transparency by changing the board rules so the county chairman no longer has the authority to appoint committee members and chairs. It's a power she says is abused and used to broker committee assignments in exchange for remaining chairman.

District 6 includes parts of Grafton Township, Marengo, Harvard, Woodstock, Wonder Lake and Hebron.

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