Isabella County voters choose probate court judge finalists, approve millage proposals


Isabella County voters chose probate court judge candidates and approved two local millage requests in the Tuesday, Aug. 7 primary election. 

Voters will choose between attorney Sara Spencer-Noggle and senior assistant prosecutor Stuart Black in November.

Spencer-Noggle received the most votes with 2,435. Black received 2,432 votes to beat Becky J. Bolles, who received 2,306 votes, Nick Wood who received 2,287 votes and Matthew Hagen, who received 745 votes.

Sara Spencer-Noggle.

Spencer-Noggle has bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in political science and from Central Michigan University. Spencer-Noggle has a law degree from Michigan State University. After graduating, Spencer-Noggle worked under then Gov. Jennifer Granholm in the legal division. She then worked as a rehearing attorney in the Michigan Court of Appeals. 

Black worked as the senior assistant prosecutor for Isabella County for ten years. He graduated from Cooley Law School. 

Probate Court directly impacts families in important ways, such as deciding estate matters and guardianship for those with disabilities, children and others who require a guardian. 

Stuart Black poses for a photo.

Voters will choose between Spencer-Noggle and Black in November.

Voters approved a Isabella County Parks and Recreation Commission request to renew a six-year millage of .35 mills, with 8,239 voting yes and 3,574 voting no. The renewal will generate up to about $572,000 in 2019. The money will be used to operate and improve park facilities and programs. 

A renewal of .35 mills means 35 cents for every $1,000 of taxable property value. If the taxable value of a person's home is about $50,000 and the millage renewal is approved, the taxpayer would continue to pay an additional $17.50 in taxes until 2023, when the millage is up for renewal.

Voters approved a Chippewa District Library request to renew a 20-year millage of 1.75 mills, with 6,168 voting yes and 1,656 voting no. The renewal would generate about $2.08 million in 2019. The funds will help expand the library's programs and technology and information access. The district library has operated under the same millage rate since 1998. 

A renewal of .75 mill means $1.75 for every $1,000 of taxable value of a property. If the taxable value of a person's home is $50,000, they would continue to pay an additional $87.50 in taxes until 2038, when the millage will be up for renewal again.

In other local races, voted decided: 

Democrat attorney Kristen Brown will challenge State House Rep. Roger Hauck, R-Union Township, in the Nov. 6 general election. 

In Isabella County, Brown received 3,085 votes to beat Mount Pleasant Mayor Allison Quast-Lents who received 2,076 votes. Mid-Michigan Community College professor Randall Doyle received 380 votes. Part of the House district includes townships in Midland County. In Midland County, Brown received 749 votes, Quast-Lents received 345 votes and Doyle received 215 votes. 

Brown has a Bachelor of Arts in political science/pre-law degree from Michigan State University. She earned her Juris Doctor degree from Detroit College of Law. Brown has worked as a lawyer for 23 years. 

Republican David Barberi will face Democrat Larry King in the fall race to become the Isabella County prosecuting attorney. Barberi received 3,203 votes to beat acting Isabella County Prosecutor Robert Holmes who received 2,453 votes and David Gilbert who received 462 votes. 

Barberi studied as an undergrad at Central Michigan University. He later earned his Juris Doctorate from Thomas Jefferson School of Law. Barberi worked as a public defender and at his father’s firm, Barberi Law. 

Risa Hunt-Scully left the prosecutor's office in February, half-way through her second term, to take a position at the Michigan Attorney General’s office. 

The office is not up for election until 2020. Isabella County Circuit Court Judges Paul Chamberlain and Mark Duthie appointed Republican primary candidate Robert Holmes to serve the remainder of the time before the primary election. 

In other state races, Isabella County voters chose Gretchen Whitmer to face Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette in the race to become Michigan’s next governor. 

In the Republican Primary local voters favored Schuette, who received 3,380 votes. With 96 percent of precincts reporting, Schuette went on to carry the state with 479,177 votes. Lt. Gov. Brian Calley received 1,780 votes. Patrick Colbeck received 447 votes and Jim Hines received
635 votes.

In the Democratic Primary, local voters favored Whitmer, who received 3,175 votes. With 96 percent of precincts reporting, Whitmer went on to carry the state with 556,285 votes. Abdul El-Sayed received 1,823 votes. Shri Thanedar received 798 votes.

For a full list of county results click this link.