Voters will head to the polls today to elect two new members of the Leavenworth County Commission.

Voters will head to the polls today to elect two new members of the Leavenworth County Commission.

The election will complete a process to expand the County Commission from three members to five.

Leavenworth County voters approved the expansion in November.

The expansion was proposed by a group called Give Me Five. Members of the group collected signatures to have the issue placed on the ballot last year.

Voters in the County Commission’s new 4th and 5th districts will be voting in today’s special election to select their representatives.

The 4th District comprises the city of Lansing, Delaware Township and a section of southeast Leavenworth.

The candidates for the 4th District are Republican Chad Schimke, Democrat Troy Smith and independent Hank Spellman.

The 5th District comprises Tonganoxie, Reno and Sherman townships as well as the cities of Tonganoxie and Linwood.

The candidates for the 5th District are independent David Frese, independent Curtis Oroke, Republican Mike Stieben and Democrat Stuart Sweeney.

Polls for today’s special election will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

County Clerk Janet Klasinski predicted a voter turnout of about 35 percent.

She said there are a little more than 15,000 registered voters in the 4th and 5th districts. About 1,900 people took advantage of advance voting ahead of today’s special election.

Results from today’s election will be posted on the county government’s website, www.leavenworthcounty.org, as the votes are tallied this evening.

Klasinksi said current members of the County Commission, acting as the Board of County Canvassers, will certify the election results April 3.

According to Klasinski, the winners in the 4th and 5th districts in today’s special election, will serve on the commission through 2020. In November 2020, voters will elect candidates from the 4th and 5th districts to two-year terms. Beginning in 2022, the seats for the 4th and 5th districts will be up for election every four years.

Twitter: @LVTNewsJohnR