A privacy booth at Wrangell’s Nolan Center on municipal election day, 6 October 2020.
(Sage Smiley / KSTK)

It’s official: here are the certified results from Wrangell’s municipal election.

Incumbent Mayor Steve Prysunka has been re-elected for his second two-year term, with 359 votes. Fifty-eight voters wrote in a candidate other than Mayor Prysunka, who ran unopposed.

The mayor thanked all the candidates at the borough assembly’s special meeting to certify the election Thursday evening, commending the public service desires of community members, whether they won seats or not.

“I know that we just had a wonderful slate of folks this year,” Prysunka commented at the end of the meeting. “It’s nice to live in a community that can have such a wonderful group come together to do well by their community. So thank you to everyone.”

In the Assembly races, challenger Terry Courson, a former Wrangell police officer, won a one-year term over recent assembly appointee Bob Dalrymple by just over 100 votes. Courson received 276 votes; Dalrymple had 185 votes.

Assembly members Ryan Howe and Anne Morrison have been re-elected to full-term, three-year assembly seats. Morrison was the top vote-getter with 332 votes, Howe had 274. Challenger Jennifer Jackson trailed Howe by 57 votes.

In the race for a school board seat, Laura Ballou cinched the seat over Constance Harris by 183 votes, receiving a total of 314 votes. There were six write-ins.

Gary Morrison has been reelected to Wrangell’s port commission for a full term of three years , with 422 votes. Morrison ran unopposed. Some 10 ballots had write-ins. 

There were 51 write-ins for the one-year port commission term, but without any officially-declared write-in candidates, nobody won the race. The position will instead be filled by appointment.

The ballot measure proposing the City and Borough of Wrangell withdraw from the Inter-Island Ferry Authority passed, with just over 60% in favor. 

Participation in this year’s municipal election was slightly higher than in 2019: the city clerk’s office reports that 24% of the 1,981 registered voters in Wrangell voted this year. That’s slightly higher than the 21% turnout in last year’s local election. Most voters in Wrangell cast ballots in person, with just 3% voting early or by mail or fax. Two questioned ballots were not counted, since the people who cast the ballots are registered to vote in other municipalities.

Terms of office begin at the next meeting: Monday for the school board, Tuesday for the borough assembly. The next port commission meeting is not on the calendar yet.

WEB: Voter registration for November’s general election has closed. But registered voters wishing to vote absentee have until October 24 to request ballots. More information can be found at the Alaska Division of Elections website.

Get in touch with KSTK at news@kstk.org or (907) 874-2345.