The final slate of six candidates is set for the upcoming Nez Perce Tribal Executive Committee (NPTEC) general election on May 8, following the primary election last Saturday, April 3.
Two candidates will compete for each of seats 1, 2 and 3. Mary Jane Miles, the incumbent and Ryan Oatman will compete for seat 1 as the only two candidates who filed for the position.
In the April 3 primary election, Samuel N. Penney, with 139 votes, and the incumbent Ferris Paisano III with 126 votes topped the primary field of eight candidates to advance to the general election. Erik Holt (84 votes), Scherri R. Greene (67 votes), Mary TallBull (58 votes), Tonia Garcia (45 votes), July Tess Greene (31 votes) and Louis Harris (29 votes) also competed in the primary. In the race for seat 3, incumbent Shirley Allman won decisively with 461 votes with James R. Spencer, 63 votes, both advancing to the general election. Sheldon R. Allen received 50 votes.
The vote counting was shown on Facebook live in real time, with elections officials tracking the votes on flip charts as the names were read out. According to election judge, Melissa Guzman, General Council Chairwoman Julia Davis Wheeler certified the vote. Several people posted positive comments in response to the chance to watch the counting on Facebook live.
Aqua Greene posted, “A lot of tribal membership requested this for years. It’s awesome to have this opportunity. Good job, election judges, for working on this.”