Republicans win both positions overseeing Stephenson County Board

The vote changes what was once a bipartisan landscape for leadership for the first time in more than a decade
Published: Dec. 5, 2022 at 8:18 PM CST
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FREEPORT, Ill. (WIFR) - Stephenson County sees a shift in authority, as Republicans win both positions in charge of overseeing the County Board Monday night. The outcome of the votes changes what was once a bipartisan landscape for leadership for the first time in a decade.

Republican Scott Helms takes the majority of votes Monday night, defeating former Republican County Chairman Bill Hadley for the role.

“I gave it ten good years as County Board Chairman, I think I’ve moved the county forward, I’ve built great relationships with a lot of people throughout the state and federal government,” Hadley told 23 News.

Republican Tim Whalen also wins Vice Chairman, beating the former-serving Democrat Samuel Newton for the position. This means what was once a bipartisan team of leaders for a decade is now controlled by a team of two Republicans, who sweep the majority of votes for chairperson positions in the first meeting since the midterm elections.

“I’ve seen what it’s like in other areas, I’ve learned a lot in other communities, and interfacing with leaders in other communities, I look forward to bringing all those experiences back and Hopefully helping everybody get ahead in this county,” Whalen said.

Helms wins 9-7, while Whalen takes the majority votes, 10-6.

Helms declined to do an interview Monday night, but he did release a statement, it reads, in part, “The days of being reactive will be replaced with a vision and a strategic plan that guides the county forward.”