Oklahoma City reelects Holt, Stillwater chooses Joyce, Norman mayoral race headed to runoff
Voters in 65 of Oklahoma's 77 counties took to the polls Tuesday to decide on several local elections – including mayoral and city council races, school board and bond elections and other propositions. Here are some of those election results:
Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt won reelection Tuesday evening, with nearly 60% of the vote. He bested challengers Frank Urbanic (19.9%), Carol Hefner, (13.6%) and Jimmy Lawson (6.6%). Holt first became OKC’s 36th mayor in 2018 and will not be up for reelection again until 2026.
Oklahoma City saw more than double the turnout for the 2022 mayoral election than 2018. Oklahoma City has grown over the last decade by at least 100,000 —- one of 14 cities in the nation to do so, according to the latest census data.
Holt gained roughly 12,000 more votes than he did in 2018, but because of a more competitive race, he gained less of a share of the total votes. In 2018, Holt earned 78.5% of the vote, but gathered just 59.8% in 2022.
Incumbent Breea Clark will face challenger Larry Heikkila in a runoff election on April 5, after neither of the top two vote getters received a majority of the vote on Tuesday. Clark got 36.5% of the vote and Heikkila received 32% in the five-way race. Other challengers in the race included Bob Thompson (18.9%), Nicole Kish (12.5%) and A.E. Stephenson-Leuck (0.1%).
Clark, who successfully withstood a recall attempt in 2020 and faced death threats over coronavirus restrictions and a reallocation of proposed police funding, will square off against Heikkila, who has made increasing police funding a campaign priority and has been endorsed by Norman’s Fraternal Order of Police.
Norman City Council also had their even numbered seats up for election on Tuesday. Ward 2 will be served by Lauren Schueler, Ward 6 by Elizabeth Foreman and Ward 8 by Matt Peacock.
The Ward 4 race will go to a runoff, as neither of the top two candidates — Helen Grant and Gale Hobson — received the majority of the vote.
Will Joyce won his reelection campaign for Stillwater Mayor against challenger Marc Trotter. Joyce won with 73.5% of the vote. The Oklahoma State University alum was first elected the city’s mayor in 2018, following a two-year stint on the city council.
Voters in Stillwater also approved both tax propositions on the ballot.
The transportation sales tax proposition, which would increase Stillwater’s transportation tax from a half cent to one cent, passed with 71.1% of the vote. The funds from the tax will be used for transportation projects and improvements. The increase begins on July 1, 2022 and lasts until June 30, 2032.
The other Stillwater proposition proposed raising the visitor tax, previously known as the hotel tax, from 4 to 7 percent. It passed with 69.9% of the vote. This tax applies to individuals who stay in a hotel, bed and breakfast or short-term rental in Stillwater. The change from the proposition is estimated to produce $1.3 million in the first year. The sum will be used to invest in visitor department amenities and markings for local businesses and events. The increase is the first time the tax has been raised since 1985.
Muskogee: With 85.5% of the vote, Marlon Coleman resoundingly won his reelection campaign for Muskogee mayor against challenger and councilwoman Traci McGee.
Midwest City: Matthew Dukes was cruised to reelection as Midwest City's mayor with 65.3% of the vote against challengers Bill Bridges, realtor Ren Caldwell and martial arts instructor Charles Wallace.
Bixby’s two school bond proposals
Voters in Bixby passed two school bond propositions - each with more than 79% of the vote. The propositions put forth by Bixby Public Schools are for a combined $114.7 million dollars to extend the school’s millage rate through 2029. A millage rate is the tax rate used to calculate local property taxes. Proposition One will pay for a new high school to accommodate the district’s projected population growth and expansions to West Elementary and West Intermediate School, as well as a new gym that will double as a safe room at East Intermediate School and other updates. Proposition Two will pay for new vehicles, including replacing outdated activity buses. You can learn more about the bond propositions here.
Edmond’s Board of Education bond issue
Edmond voters easily approved two school bond propositions, totaling $120 million, that will pay for a swath of upgrades for things like technology,
existing buildings, school security and transportation. The school district is expanding near northwest 150th and Penn Avenue and says they need to continue buying land to accommodate a growing population.
The Village residents’ city infrastructure bonds
The Village residents passed two infrastructure bonds totaling $13.2 million. A $9.9 million bond focusing on improving streets including sidewalks, lighting, drainage and signalization received 78% of the vote. The other bond – which passed with 73% of the vote – allocates $3.2 million to constructing, renovating and repairing parks and recreational facilities. They will be paid off over a span of 20 years.
Wynnewood, Elmore City school bond issue
A school bond issue for technology and transportation improvements passed in Wynnewood and Elmore City. The bond issue, which totals $560,000, was split into two propositions on the ballot. The first proposition totaling $210,000 passed with 78% of the vote. The bond will fund technology improvements
in the elementary and high school for new computer labs, replacing outdated technology, such as outdated projectors and Smartboards across the district. The second proposition, totaling $350,000 received 79% of the vote. This bond will pay for new activity buses and vans to replace ones that have served the school district more than 13 years.
Additional election results can be found with the State Election Board.
This report was produced by the Oklahoma Public Media Exchange, a collaboration of public media organizations. Help support collaborative journalism by donating at the link at the top of this webpage.