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Dave Dotterrer wins Jackson County commissioner race

Republican Dave Dotterrer has won a seat on the Jackson County Board of Commissioners, according to preliminary election results.

Dotterrer received 54.8% of the vote, or 65,630 votes, compared to Democrat Terrie Martin, who pulled in 42.7% of the vote, or 51,165 votes, according to results posted late Tuesday night.

“I feel very good about it and I’m happy and also very proud of my campaign team. They did a great job,” Dotterrer said.

He and Martin competed for Position 2, which is being vacated by Jackson County Commissioner Bob Strosser, a Republican who didn’t seen reelection and plans to retire.

Dotterrer is a retired U.S. Marine Corps colonel and disaster preparedness consultant.

With the Jackson County government playing a key role responding to COVID-19 and the aftermath of devastating local fires, Dotterrer campaigned in part on his disaster response credentials.

“My first priority is going to be disaster recovery and rebuilding,” he said of his main priorities in January 2021, when winners take office.

During his campaign, Dotterrer said he wants the county government to streamline planning and building regulations for temporary and permanent housing needed to replace homes destroyed by the Almeda and South Obenchain fires.

About half of properties burned by the Almeda fire are under county jurisdiction, while other homes and businesses were within the cities of Phoenix and Talent.

The South Obenchain fire in northern Jackson County primarily burned rural homes and outbuildings.

Martin is a writer and one of five co-owners of the family-owned D&S Harley-Davidson, a Phoenix business destroyed by the Almeda fire. She was previously a reporter for the Mail Tribune.

“Of course I’m disappointed by the results, but we made a really strong showing,” she said of the preliminary Tuesday night vote count. “I have a wonderful team of people who worked really hard on this.”

Martin has been critical of the failure of the local emergency alert system to send out adequate evacuation alerts to residents as the fast-moving Almeda fire bore down on communities. Jackson County has hired a consultant to do a review of the overall fire response.

Martin also said Jackson County Commissioners Colleen Roberts and Rick Dyer haven’t been supportive enough of COVID-19 safety regulations.

During their campaigns, both Martin and Dotterrer said temporary housing and rebuilding are needed to provide homes for people so they don’t have to move away in the aftermath of the fires. They said Jackson County is in danger of losing many workers who are key to the area’s economic health.

“Both of us ran a clean race,” Dotterrer said. “We said we wanted to talk about what was important and that’s what we did.”

Libertarian Edward Stanton trailed in third place with 2.4% of the vote, or 2,886 votes.

Various write-in candidates received 97 votes, or less than 1% of votes.

Reach Mail Tribune reporter Vickie Aldous at valdous@rosebudmedia.com. Follow her on Twitter @VickieAldous.

Dave Dotterrer