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Two legislative seats to go before Oklahoma voters Tuesday

The flags are at half staff at the Oklahoma capitol building Wed. Dec. 27, 2006 in Oklahoma City. BY JACONNA AGUIRRE/THE OKLAHOMAN. ORG XMIT: KOD
The flags are at half staff at the Oklahoma capitol building Wed. Dec. 27, 2006 in Oklahoma City. BY JACONNA AGUIRRE/THE OKLAHOMAN. ORG XMIT: KOD

Contests to fill two open Oklahoma House of Representatives seats will be the highlights of Tuesday's election.

Those races are among a handful of matters that will go before Oklahoma voters Tuesday.

Representative seats

In Seminole and Pottawatomie counties, voters will select a state representative to fill the Oklahoma House District 28 seat, which was vacated last year by former state Rep. Tom Newell.

Newell, a Republican, resigned in November, just days after winning re-election. He is now a senior fellow at the Foundation for Government Accountability, a conservative think tank based in Naples, Florida.

Vying for the seat are Republican candidate Zack Taylor, an oil and gas operator; Libertarian candidate Cody Presley, a Shawnee city employee; and Democratic candidate Steve Barnes, a Wewoka attorney.

In Tulsa County, Democratic and Republican primary elections will be held for the Oklahoma House District 75 seat, which was vacated earlier this year by former state Rep. Dan Kirby.

The Bixby Republican resigned his position in December amid sexual harassment allegations. He rescinded that resignation days later, but resigned again in February after a special House investigative committee recommended his expulsion.

In the Democratic primary, Jamie Smith, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Oklahoma's Tulsa campus, will face Karen Gaddis, a retired teacher. Gaddis ran for the seat in last November's general election, losing to Kirby.

The Republican primary will be a four-way race among Skip Steele, a former Tulsa city councilman; Tressa Nunley, a Tulsa real estate agent; businessman Nik Berg and political blogger AJ Oatsvall.

Bond issues

Voters in the Crooked Oak school district will consider a $1.1 million bond issue for improvements to the school gymnasium, including installing air conditioning and upgrading the sound system.

Crooked Oak Superintendent Bradley Richards said the upgrades would allow the district to hold major events, including graduation, in the gymnasium rather than renting facilities.

In Davenport, voters will consider a $515,000 bond issue to fund a number of construction projects. Major items would include $117,000 for replacing the bleachers in the school gymnasium, $100,000 to build a teacher's workroom and custodial closet at the Early Childhood building and $90,000 for improvements to the district's Vo-Ag building.

Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday. Voters must show proof of identity when voting. Acceptable forms of identification include an Oklahoma driver's license or identification card, an Oklahoma voter registration card, a U.S. passport or military identification card, or photo identification from a federally recognized tribe.

Silas Allen

Silas Allen is a news reporter for The Oklahoman. He is a Missouri native and a 2008 graduate of the University of Missouri. Read more ›