Sunday, Bracey prevail in 2017 primaries

Jason Addy

The race for York City mayor went down to the wire until the final round of primary election results came in Tuesday night.

According to unofficial results from the York County Voting and Elections office, York City Mayor Kim Bracey appears to have won a third term in office.

From left, York County District Attorney Dave Sunday, his wife, Lishani Sunday, and Campaign Manager Joel Ogle anticipate results during a primary election watch party at Central Market in York City, Tuesday, May 16, 2017. Dawn J. Sagert photo

York City Council President Michael Helfrich conceded the Democratic nomination to Bracey on Tuesday night, saying "the math doesn't lie," with Bracey leading by a nearly eight-point margin with 88 percent of votes tallied.

No Republicans were on the ballot.

However, Helfrich said he believes he will win the Republican Party's nomination for mayor after appealing to GOP voters to write his name on their ballots, a result that would give him another chance to challenge Bracey in November.

"This is merely halftime," Helfrich said.

Turnout varies at polling places across York County

Running as a Democrat in the Republican Party is "unknown territory," he said, adding that he looks forward to getting out to meet the 3,000 or so York City Republicans and independents who will be able to vote in the November general election.

"I don't think I have to appeal any more to the other voters," Helfrich said. "My vision for the city is common sense. My vision for the city is fiscally conservative but also addressing the social issues that are at the core of our problems."

Bracey could not be reached for comment on the results Tuesday night.

District attorney: Dave Sunday, chief deputy prosecutor in the York County District Attorney’s Office, is one step closer to becoming district attorney after edging out attorney Jonelle Harter Eshbach.

In what was one of the closest races of the day, Sunday received 51.7 percent of the vote for the Republican nomination, compared to Eshbach’s 48.2 percent, according to unofficial results. There were no Democrats on the ballot.

Sunday will take over from incumbent District Attorney Tom Kearney in January barring a successful write-in challenge in November.

Sunday and Eshbach could not be reached for comment Tuesday night.

Court of Common Pleas: York County voters had nine candidates — all cross filed as both Democrats and Republicans — to choose from to fill three seats on the York County Court of Common Pleas, and on Tuesday, they dwindled the field down to four candidates for the Nov. 7 general election.

With 98 percent of precincts reporting, Kathleen Prendergast and Clyde Vedder have secured top-three finishes in both the Democratic and Republican parties, meaning they will appear twice on the ballot in November.

Vedder edged out Amber Anstine Kraft by 22 votes for third place in the Democratic primary, but Kraft will still appear on the November ballot after finishing with the third-most votes in the Republican primary.

Sandra Thompson won the second-most votes in the Democratic primary, giving her a place on the general election ballot.

Prendergast, Vedder, Thompson and Kraft will now face off in November to fill three open seats on the bench.

In total, Prendergast received more than 21,800 votes, Kraft won more than 16,000 votes, and Vedder earned 15,620 votes. Thompson finished with more than 11,400 votes.

York City Council: York City Council members Judy Ritter-Dickson and Henry Nixon easily won ballot spots in November for four-year terms Tuesday night, defeating Renee Nelson and Anne Clark in the Democratic primary.

Ritter-Dickson also beat Nelson and Clark to the Democratic nomination for a two-year term on the council, but it is unclear what will happen with that seat now.

Ritter-Dickson nearly doubled the vote counts of Nelson and Clark, who both finished with 25 percent of the vote in the three-way race for a two-year term.

No Republicans were on the ballot for city council seats.

City school district: All three candidates running for York City school board were guaranteed to get on the general election ballot in November, as there are four open seats.

Still, Tonya Thompson-Morgan, Lisa Kennedy and Margie Orr picked up the votes they needed to all but secure seats on the York City school board starting in January with no Republicans set to challenge them in November.

Northeastern: In a school board race that drew some attention throughout the primary, Northeastern school board member Linda Morningstar and former board member William Gingerich easily saw off the challenge of Chris Leh.

In the three-way race for two seats, Gingerich won 44 percent of the vote and Morningstar picked up 42 percent of the vote, while Leh won just 13 percent.

Leh announced his campaign for the Northeastern school board after attending the board’s meetings to see how they would deal with former Superintendent Shawn Minnich, who is facing charges for assaulting Leh in December 2015.

Liquor sales: Liquor referendums were on the ballot Tuesday in two York County municipalities and passed in both.

Nearly two-thirds of voters in Shrewsbury voted to allow liquor sales inside the borough’s limits, while voters in East Hopewell Township supported a referendum to allow the Pleasant Valley Golf Course to serve liquor at the same rate, according to unofficial results.