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WNIJ's summary of news items around our state.

New Mayors For DeKalb and Sycamore

Jenna Dooley

Jerry Smith will be the next DeKalb mayor

He won with 48 percent of votes.

Separated by just four votes, Misty Haji-Sheikh had 19.21 percent while incumbent John Rey finished a close third with 19.13 percent. Michael Embrey had 13 percent of votes.

John Rey has served as mayor since 2013. 

Smith is a former executive director of the DeKalb County Community Foundation. 

Smith says he's known incumbent John Rey for many years and he expects the transition will be smooth.

But Smith also acknowledged residents showed by their votes that they are ready for a change in leadership.

"Some of the things that we have been talking about--not only me, but the other two challengers, are things that we need to address in this community."

He says he was surprised by the margin of victory.

"I looked at [the numbers] and I said, 'What?!' I think our message resonated. The proof is in the pudding."

There were three open spots on the DeKalb School Board which went to Jeff Hallgren, Valerie Pena Hernandez, and Victoria Newport.


A referendum that would increase property taxes toincrease funding for DeKalb County health services failed 56% to 44%.

In Sycamore, Curtis Lang defeated Candy Smith and Rick Spider Kramer for mayor. Incumbent Ken Mundy did not run for re-election.

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