Special Section

Looking Ahead 2019 - New Year, New Council

Tom Giffey |

The Eau Claire City Council could see big changes later this spring for the second year in a row. Twelve candidates will be vying for the five at-large council seats, while two current council members will compete to serve as president.

A Feb. 19 primary will be required to winnow down the number of at-large candidates, and the general election will be April 2. The candidates for the at-large seats include two incumbents, Catherine Emmanuelle and Kate Beaton; one former council member, David Klinkhammer; and a host of potential council newcomers, including Kirk Ausman, Laura Benjamin, John Lor, Chandler Lorentz, Kate Martin, Donald Motzing, Dale Poynter, Echo Reardon, and Kyle Woodman. (Two current at-large members – Michael Xiong and David Stroebel – chose not to seek third terms.)

Meanwhile, District 5 Councilman Andrew Werthmann, who became acting council president last summer, and Terry Weld, who is currently an at-large member of the council, will compete on the April 2 ballot in a special election for council president. The winner will serve the remaining year of former Council President Kerry Kincaid,’s term. (She resigned last summer.)

Other local races will be on the nonpartisan spring ballot as well: In Chippewa Falls, Mayor Greg Hoffman – who was appointed to the post in 2008 – will run unopposed for another term. Three seats will be on the Eau Claire School Board ballot. Candidates will be two incumbents, Eric Torres and Aaron Harder, and two newcomers, Erica Zerr and Tim Nordin. Incumbent Chris Hambuch-Boyle won’t seek another term.

City Council members will also be elected in Altoona, Chippewa Falls, and Menomonie. However, according to election filings reported by the Leader-Telegram, all council candidates in these cities will be running without opposition.