Updated, 1:30 p.m.
By Charles Sercombe
Plans for building a new school and making major repairs to existing school buildings will have to be put on hold.
It appears Hamtramck voters overwhelmingly rejected the public school district’s bond proposal to raise property taxes by seven mills for up to 30 years.
Those voting against it totaled 2,571, and those for it totaled 1,380.
If it had passed, it would have raised $35 million.
Those totals are not official yet.
Getting the vote tallies was no easy task,
Hamtramck City Clerk August Gitschlag emailed The Review at 3 a.m. saying there was a “technical nightmare with ballot jams and tabulator failures” in counting absentee ballots.
In the race for state representative for the 4th district, Abraham Aiyash won by a wide margin with 5,352 votes, which includes voters from the Detroit portion of the district.
Aiyash, of Hamtramck, said in a Facebook posting on election day that he was feeling “very good” about election results.
“We are going to win this, folks,” he added.
Two other Hamtramck candidates, Michele Oberholtzer and Shahab Ahmed, trailed in that race. Olberholtzer came in second with 1,946 votes.
Several other Detroit candidates in that race were also in the race.
It has been 30 years since Hamtramck has had one of its own represent this district, which includes part of Detroit, in the state legislature.
The last resident to serve was Chester Wozniak, who managed to squeeze in one last term when he was elected to the legislature in 1990.
That election victory was considered a fluke, and he served only one term. He had previously represented Hamtramck in the 1950s.
In the race for Wayne County Commissioner for the district that includes Hamtramck, Highland Park and a portion of Detroit, incumbent Martha Scott coasted into victory with 10,761 votes.
Her only challenger was Hamtramck City Councilmember Mohammed Hassan, who garnered 3,481 votes.
Holding up Hamtramck election results, as well as in many other communities, were a high number of voters voting via absentee ballots. Many voters chose this method to vote because of health concerns posed by the coronavirus pandemic. Over 4,000 residents here voted by absentee ballot.
By state law, absentee ballots cannot be counted until election day – not as they come in to the city clerk’s office on a daily basis in the days leading up to election day.
There were 3,111 absentee ballots, with another 648 that were never returned. In-person voting numbered 1,515. The total voter turnout was 4,626.
Posted Aug. 5, 2020