Amidst a pandemic, contentious campaigns and many gripping local issues, Election Day arrived in Utah on Tuesday, Nov. 3. Thousands of Utahns voted by mail for city, county, state and national candidates while many cast their votes in person. 

“Most ballots were mailed out and dropped off,” said Grand County Clerk/Auditor Quinn Hall, who ran uncontested for his position this year, “but the office was busy with in-person voters all day on Tuesday. Generally, the lobby was full from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.”

Hall reported that the City of Moab displayed 86% voter turnout — 20% higher than the national average.

“We’ve got a bunch of engaged voters here, and we’re happy to have them. I think everything went really smoothly,” he continued.

According to preliminary election results for the Grand County Commission, Trisha Hedin has defeated incumbent Greg Halliday. 

“My goal is to just look all around at different people and wonder what their wants and needs are and, hopefully, be able to represent the larger community,” said Heden to the Moab Sun News on Nov. 4. 

Kevin Walker narrowly won out over Stephen Stocks for the at-large seat. The chair of the Grand County Democratic Party nabbed 51.70% of the popular vote.

“Over the course of the campaign I spoke with a large number of Grand County residents, and one thing came through loud and clear: People are very unhappy with the impact tourism is having on our community and on our quality of life,” Walker told the Moab Sun News on Nov. 4.

“I think it’s not too late to turn things around, and I look forward to tackling these issues on the County Commission. We need to put residents first,” Walker said.

Stocks conceded the race, stating on Wednesday morning: “I am touched by the support shown in my race as an independent for the Grand County at-large seat. I wish Mr. Walker the best in his tenure. Thank you Grand County for getting out and making your voice heard.”

Current Grand County Commission members Gabriel Woyteck and Evan Clapper were unopposed for their seats, as was newcomer Jacques Hadler who took the seat vacated by Rory Paxman.