Belgrade City Hall

With one week to go before the filing deadline, 14 candidates are running for the 16 positions up for election in Gallatin County in November.

Candidates must return a completed election form, which is on the county website, and pay a filing fee, which varies by office, to the election department by Monday at 5 p.m. They also must register with the Commissioner of Political Practices.

Bozeman, Belgrade, Manhattan, Three Forks and West Yellowstone will each hold municipal elections.


Mayor Cyndy Andrus’ and Commissioner Jeff Krauss’ terms end on the city commission this year.

So far, Andrus is the only candidate running for mayor. If elected, she would serve two years as deputy mayor before becoming mayor for two years. Deputy Mayor Chris Mehl, who was elected in 2017, will serve as mayor for two years beginning in 2020.

Michael Wallner, who is the head economic researcher at TechLink is so far the only candidate running for the open four-year city commission seat.

Municipal Judge Karl Seel also is up for re-election and is the only person to have announced his candidacy for the four-year term.


Mayor Russell C. Nelson has filed for reelection and remains unchallenged.

One of the two seats for each of Belgrade’s three city council wards is up for election. In Ward 1, Anne Koentopp’s term is ending, and Michael Meis and Renae Mattimoe have filed for her seat. In Ward 2, Jim Doyle is seeking re-election and, so far, is unopposed. In Ward 3, Jim Simon is seeking re-election with no challengers to date.


Two of the four seats on the town council also will be on the ballot as councilmen Gregg Dietz and Steve Gonzalez are nearing the end of their four-year terms.

Gonzalez is seeking re-election. Callie Hamilton and Betsy Mancuso also have filed to fill the two open seats.

Three Forks

Half of the seats on the city council are up for election, with Steve Dahl, Debra Mickelberry and Teri Whitesitt finishing up their four-year terms.

Dahl is the only candidate who has filed so far.

Voters also will select a mayor to take over for Steve Hamilton, whose term ends in 2021 but who stepped down in May. To date, no one has filed to fill the remainder of Hamilton’s term. At a June 25 meeting, the town council will appoint an interim mayor to serve until a new mayor is elected in November.

West Yellowstone

Jeff McBirnie and Pierre Martineau have filed for four-year terms on the town council to fill the seats held by Deputy Mayor Greg Forsythe and Town Council member Pierre Martineau.

Once filing closes, the Gallatin County Election Department will determine, based on the number of candidates and the number of open offices, if any city or town needs to hold a primary election. The election department will make this determination by June 27. Primaries would then be conducted via mail-in ballot on Sept. 10.

Perrin Stein can be reached at 406-582-2648 or at Follow her on Twitter @PerrinStein.

Perrin Stein is the county, state and federal government reporter for the Chronicle.

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