July 30, 2013

With two days remaining until the election filing deadline, two Carroll Community School District Board seats are open with no announced candidates.

If no one files for the board, two seats will be determined by write-in votes, meaning district residents - who may have no interest in serving, or conversely, advocate hidden agendas that aren't known to the electorate - could earn spots on the board with a handful of votes.

Board members Jerry Fleshner and Dennis Molitor are not seeking re-election to four-year terms on the board.

Fleshner said he is considering a campaign for the Carroll City Council.

As of this morning, Carroll School District secretary and director of business affairs Gary Bengtson said no board candidates have come forward - although three people have approached the district offices expressing various levels of interest.

Candidates for the school board have until 5 p.m. Thursday to file with the district secretary at the Adams building. All materials must go the district secretary, who in turn, files with the Carroll County Auditor's Office.

Candidates need 50 signatures to file for the Carroll Community School Board.

School board elections in Iowa will be held Tuesday, Sept. 10.

One Carroll board member who is not up for re-election, LaVern Dirkx, said he has worked unsuccessfully to recruit five people as candidates.

"To me, it's a concern that nobody's stepping forward and taking interest in the school system," Dirkx said.

Dirkx said the fact that state law prevents board members from being compensated clearly reduces the potential candidate pool. Dirkx said he often spends 10 to 20 hours a week on board matters in a volunteer capacity.

"High-quality candidates probably don't run because there is no financial compensation," Dirkx said.

Carroll City Council members are paid $2,400 annually.