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Kenosha County Eye

Salem Lakes Voters Send Clear Message: The Old Board Must Go

Kathryn Kelly Sweeting, Jared Young, and Bill Barhyte and Rita Bucar Celebrating at Stage Stop
(Submitted Photo)

While there is still another election before the final makeup of the board will be decided, the voters in Salem Lakes sent a clear message Tuesday – the board must be replaced. Three of the four challengers, who are running together, took the top three spots in today’s primary election. Not only did they take the top three spots, but they won by a commanding margin. Kelly Sweeting, Jared Young, and Bill Barhyte, all political newcomers, took first, second, and third places respectively. Norm Kazumura, another challenger, also advances to the general election.  The three incumbents received very few votes. Trustee Dan Campion will no longer be elected to the board. All other candidates will advance to the April general election.

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The Village of Salem Lakes has had a dark cloud looming over it due to countless allegations of misconduct, corruption, and bad behavior. From a Village Administrator, Fire Inspector, and Fire Chief drunk on power, to allegations of trustees using their influence to personally benefit themselves, there is a lot going on that apparently motivated many taxpayers to vote, and vote they did.

Here is the breakdown:

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KCE reached out to all seven candidates. None of the incumbent board members responded to our request for comment. We did hear back from four of the challengers.

Kathryn Kelly Sweeting
(Submitted Photo)

“The people have spoken. It’s time for a change,” said Kelly Sweeting.

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Jared Young
(Submitted Photo)

It’s time for people to stand up for what’s right. The voters did that tonight,” said Jared Young.

Bill Barhyte
(Submitted Photo)

“I’m grateful for everyone that came out to vote for us tonight,” said Bill Barhyte.

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Norm Kazumura
(Submitted Photo)

I’m excited that I’m in the next round. I will work extremely hard to be your next Village of Salem Lakes trustee,” said Norm Kazumura.

Village President Race

Since there are only two candidates for Salem Lakes Village President, there was no primary today. Rita Bucar, however is running on the same platform as the four trustee challengers – change is needed.

Rita Bucar
(Submitted Photo)
Diann Tesar Incumbent and Candidate for Village President
(Photo by Kevin Mathewson, Kenosha County Eye)

The general election is April 4, 2023.


  • Kevin Mathewson

    Kevin Mathewson is a disciple of Christ, husband and a father to two wonderful children. Mathewson was born and raised in Lake County, IL and worked as a police & fire dispatcher from 2005 to 2010 in Round Lake Beach, IL. Mathewson moved to Kenosha County in 2006, later being elected to the position of Alderman of the 8th District in 2012 and 2016. Mathewson is a private investigator, security contractor, journalist, and photographer. He enjoys spending time with his family, watching movies, camping and boating. His favorite amendment is the second, followed closely by the first. He loves his country and community.


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19 Responses

  1. This board has run unopposed for so long it’s fantastic that change is in the air. And not just one but four. Can’t wait for next year to do it again !

  2. This is what happens when voices speak up. This is only the beginning of better days for Salem Lakes. The voices must show up one more time, to start the change needed. Voting April 4th is as important as today.

  3. When I first heard of the outrageous supposed violations our business was accused of, I immediately dismissed the problem thinking it was just some small town politician looking for a SHAKE DOWN. After all we are only an hour from Chicago…

    Now thousands and thousands of dollars in fines later, I heartedly support the change in our village board!

  4. The website for the “winning” Change Salem Lakes Board is missing email addresses to contact. I find it no where on the page, not even a general contact. I want to help and I suspect I am not alone. But, if it is hard for me to reach out to you, then it is going to be hard for others as well.

    Next, Tesar and then in a year it will be a finality to favoritism, control and secrecy.

  5. How much money does the Village bring in for the communications equipment on the tower? Who exactly makes the decision on what can be added to the tower? And, which companies have been dismissed from competition?

  6. Next step is Kenosha and Pleasant Prairie both need change hopefully people step up to clean up corruption.

  7. Keeping a sharper eye on Somers now as well, and will absolutely keep Hardworking Journalist Kevin M. informed! Every community in this country needs a Kevin Mathewson.

  8. Watch out when they stop the vote counting during the general election because of a broken water pipe.

  9. I’m in shock that Attorney Ted Kmiec received 93 more votes than Norm Kazumura. I’d rather have Senior Project Manager/Bartender/HOA President Mr. Kazumura than an Attorney who cheats on his seriously ill wife and whose mistress died of a fentanyl overdose in his bedroom. Seriously? We want someone like him to represent us? I don’t!!
    Now, to get rid of Diann Tesar. That rude, smart-mouthed woman has been there long enough. I only had to see her in action once several years ago to know that she thinks that she’s God’s gift and we’re all idiots. How rudely she spoke to people, her constituents, during that one meeting just amazed me. I’ve voted against her ever since. Hopefully, everyone else in the Village has seen the light and her days are numbered.

  10. This board and your judge Is all behind getting ATV on the ballet in April 4
    We do not need our roads and streets to become Adult playgrounds.
    Since they pass the use of golf carts on our streets there as been a lot more mini bikes ATV’S golf cards on the streets and must of then are kids, Shame on this Board .
    Our kids are going to get hurt , and I hope Hurt is the worst.
    Vote against ATV’S and this Board
    Salem Lakes needs Change along time ago…..

  11. Hmmm, why is it that these offices are non-partisan? I would like to know the political affiliation of anyone to whom I am considering giving my vote.

  12. Would love to see a brief position for each candidate…something that will indicate if they are in favor or more funding for schools, or against. If they are concerned with additional fire safety, or feel comfortable with our current policies, perhaps a comment on the general needs of the community and the goals they support.

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