It’s an end of an era for city government in Winnebago as two long-serving City Council members have chosen not to seek re-election.
Mayor Jeremiah Schutt has served three terms and Councilman Rick Johnson nearly 14 years on the council.
Schutt was sitting in an office at City Hall and talking with staff when Tuesday’s 5 p.m. filing deadline came and went.
In fact, Schutt had the $2 filing fee in his hand but no paperwork was ever filled and signed.
“Wow, it doesn’t seem like that long already. We’ve had some fun, good times and some struggles as well,” says Schutt. “Maybe it’s time for someone else to bring their expertise and ideas to the table.”
Schutt’s decision not to run again took a lot of thought, he says, and it never came down to just one reason. Ultimately, his family and many changes experienced in the past six months played a key role.
“Winnebago is a great community which I love and have tried to serve and represent the best I can,” he says. “I hope others think about stepping up to serve our community in the future. It takes a lot of work to keep a community going and many willing hands make the load much lighter!”
In 2012, Schutt was elected when he defeated incumbent Mayor Randy Nowak on a write-in vote of 310-286.
What are the chances of another write-in campaign and history repeating itself?
“I would consider another term if the voters wrote me in, however, that does not mean I would say yes. But, I would consider it,” he says.
Incumbent Jean Anderson and Tim Hynes have filed for the two four-year term council seats up for election on the Nov. 3 general election ballot.