Election 2021 - WGLT Voter Guide | WGLT

Election 2021 - WGLT Voter Guide

WGLT is committed to helping you become an informed voter ahead of the April 6 local election.

How To Vote

League of Women Voters Candidate Surveys

See the responses from local candidates to questions from the League of Women Voters of McLean County:

Bloomington Mayoral Candidates

Current Mayor Tari Renner is not seeking a third term.

Here is some of our coverage of the race:

You can watch WGLT's Bloomington mayoral candidates forum below, or read our recap.

Normal Mayoral Candidates

This is a rematch of the 2017 mayoral election.

Here is some of our coverage of the race:

You can watch WGLT's Normal mayoral candidates forum March 9 below, or read our recap.

Bloomington City Council

You can use the city’s map to find out in which ward you live.

Ward 1

Ward 3

Ward 5

Ward 7

Ward 9

Here is our coverage of these races:

Normal Town Council

Voters will select three candidates for at-large (townside) seats on the council.

Here is our coverage of these races:

Unit 5 School Board

Here is WGLT's overview of the race between six candidates vying for three open seats, with no incumbents in the race. You can look up your congressional township on the McLean County GIS website.

24N-2E (one seat)

23N-2E (up to two seats)

24N-3E (up to two seats)

District 87 School Board

There are four seats up for election.

  • Brigette Beasley Gibson (i)
  • Chuck Irwin (i)
  • Elizabeth Fox Anvick (i)
  • Fitzgerald Samedy

Heartland Community College Board

WGLT hosted a forum for board candidates on March 18. You can watch video below, or read our recap.

Candidates for the two 6-year terms:

  • Joshua Crockett (Bloomington)
  • Rebecca L. Ropp (Normal)
  • Catrina Parker (Bloomington)
  • Jodie Slothower (Normal)
  • Cynthia Pulley (Downs)

And candidates for the one 2-year slot, filling the reminder of Gregg Chadwicks’ term:

  • Cecelia Long (Bloomington)
  • Jim Drew (Lincoln)

Ways to Connect

Color coded map of the U.S. showing a variety of levels of ranked choice voting options by state.
FairVoteIllinois website

The League of Women Voters of McLean County will likely launch a study later this year into the benefits and drawbacks of Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) for elections.

People gathered at election night watch party
Emily Bollinger / WGLT

It's easy to see that the municipal election in Bloomington did not go well for progressives. The People First Coalition went 0-for-4 at the ballot box as more conservative and centrist candidates won.

Polling place in Normal
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

In Normal, 2,000 more voters cast ballots Tuesday than have ever voted in a town election before. And yet, that's still just over 25% of registered voters.

District 87 school board candidates

Four candidates won four open seats on the District 87 school board on Tuesday—although one of them received far fewer votes than the others.

Adult Recreation Center
Staff / WGLT

Unlike most city and town council races Tuesday, township races were partisan. And in contests for Normal Township trustee, voters elected two Democrats and two Republicans.

Bloomington city council candidates

It appears several newcomers will soon join the Bloomington City Council, while the progressive People First Coalition was shut out in its three council races.

It looks like that there won’t be any turnover on the Normal Town Council.

Two familiar faces and one newcomer were headed toward election to the Heartland Community College Board of Trustees late Tuesday.

Three newcomers were elected to the Unit 5 school board on Tuesday.

Staff / WGLT

UPDATED 12:55 p.m. | Mboka Mwilambwe claimed victory Tuesday night after defeating two less-experienced opponents in the Bloomington mayoral election. He will become the city's first Black mayor.

Election banner at ISU voting site
Ryan Denham / WGLT

McLean County voters are choosing mayors, city council members, school board members, and township officials in Tuesday's local election. Polls closed at 7 p.m.

Ryan Denham / WGLT

Consolidated local elections typically produce a lower voter turnout than even-year elections like presidential cycles. Normally, only about 20% of registered voters cast ballots.

Medici restaurant entrance

Normal Town Council candidates turn the question of pandemic recovery efforts into a litmus test on the past response to the pandemic, but don't say much about what should come next.

Candidates competing for three open seats on the Normal Town Council sparred Thursday over how best to handle town finances and infrastructure, future development, and whether divisive politics is tainting town governance.

Pantagraph Media hosted the forum, moderated by Central Illinois Editor Chris Coates. He asked candidates what they viewed as Normal’s recent successes, what policy ideas they’d bring to the table if elected, and how they’d prioritize infrastructure funding, among other questions.   

Ryan Denham / WGLT

We’re nearing the end of a local election cycle unlike any other in recent history.

The three candidates for Bloomington mayor agree on the importance of supporting small businesses and encouraging economic development. But they are starkly divided over how recreational cannabis should figure in the city’s economic future.

AP Photo / Jessica Hill

Issues of diversity and equity are top of mind after a year of renewed calls for civil rights and social justice reform. Some of those conversations center on American schools -- what students are taught, how they're treated, and what their teachers look like.

Normal City Hall
Staff / WGLT

The job of a Normal Town Council member doesn’t pay much. It comes with a lot of headaches. It takes a lot of work to listen to residents and translate that into policy. Yet nine people are running for election to three positions on April 6.

Renner, Painter and Carrillo
Staff / WGLT

You don’t have to look to Washington, D.C., to find policymakers who just don’t seem to get along politically or personally.

Stan Nord
Staff / WGLT

Normal Town Council member Stan Nord has accused City Manager Pam Reece and Mayor Chris Koos of discriminating against him.

District 87 school board candidates

UPDATED 8:10 P.M. | Voters in District 87 don't have a lot of choices when they make their school board selections on election day, but the new board will have one of its most important decisions to make soon after it is sworn in this spring.

Koos and Tiritilli
Emily Bollinger / WGLT

Tax rates are a campaign theme in most elections no matter the level of the contest. This year's race for mayor of Normal is no exception.

Chris and Marc

Marc Tiritilli used two recent Illinois attorney general rulings against the Town of Normal’s previous public comment policy to accuse Mayor Chris Koos of a “failure of leadership” during a virtual debate in the mayor’s race on Tuesday.

Nearly half of the Unit 5 school board will turn over after the April 6 election. Three seats are up for grabs, with no incumbents running.

The pandemic and issues surrounding social equity loomed large during a Thursday night forum attended by candidates for the Heartland Community College board of trustees.

Woman speaks to Normal council
Breanna Grow / WGLT

The Illinois attorney general has ruled the Town of Normal should not have barred citizen comment on an issue back in 2019. It's the second such ruling in a month.

Tom Crumpler and Jim Fruin

The Pantagraph on Wednesday evening hosted a virtual forum for Bloomington City Council candidates. With contested seats in four wards, eight candidates fielded questions from moderator and central Illinois editor Chris Coates.

District 87 headquarters
Eric Stock / WGLT

A District 87 school board candidate has distanced himself from another candidate who dropped out of the race after a history of offensive social media posts surfaced.

Marc Tritilli speaks
Emily Bollinger / WGLT

The Illinois attorney general has ruled the Town of Normal violated the Open Meetings Act in mid-September 2019 by denying Marc Tiritilli the right to speak to the council about public transit because the topic was not on the agenda.

Tiritilli is now running for mayor and has criticized the administration for squelching opposing points of view.

Whether and how the Bloomington City Council tackles some of the thorniest social justice issues in the community may hinge on the outcome of the April 6 election.