Questions, Anyone?

Voter questions

Q. What are some of the frequent questions asked at Alpena City Hall about the Nov. 5 election?

A. Alpena City Clerk Karen Hebert lists the following frequently-asked questions and gives the answers.

1) Can I vote for just one candidate even if there are two open seats? Yes.

2) Can I take my own voting instructions into the booth when I vote? Yes, but do not have it on display while standing in line if it appears to be campaigning for a candidate. Also do not leave it in the booth.

3) Can the precinct workers tell me who the write-in candidates are when I go there to vote Tuesday? No. Know your candidates or take a list with you when you go to the polls. If not, you can contact the clerk’s office for that information by calling 354-1720.

4) Can I write anyone’s name that I think would be a good candidate on the ballot? No. Only those who filed a “Declaration of Intent” in the clerk’s office by Oct. 25 are official write-in candidates. Any other names written on the ballot will not be counted.

5) Who are all the candidates? Shawn Sexton, Michael Nunneley, Calvin Howard, Cindy Johnson, and Anna Bass. The first two are listed on the ballot, the last three are the official write-in candidates. The two candidates receiving the most votes will be elected to Alpena Municipal Council.

Bare Point/Bear Point

Q. An “unanswered question” in the Oct.19 Q&A column was, “Why are the street names on Bare Point in Alpena spelled differently? One is Bare Point and the other is Bear Point.”

A. Two readers responded. Reader Kathy Hall wrote, “Years ago that region was known as Bare Point. This was long before folks built homes out there. It didn’t have the foliage (read trees) of other areas along Lake Huron shore … the limestone shelf is at the surface. Contractors built a subdivision out there with places for boats, etc. They called it “Bear Point.” But history won out. Eventually someone said Hey, it was first called Bare Point; look at the old maps.”

Reader Jacci Stepaniak comments that as a courier she noted that Bear Point Road has three-digit house numbers and Bare Point Road has four-digit house numbers. More responses to this question are welcome.

Tit for tat

Q. Where does the phrase “tit for tat” come from?

A. Robert Hendrickson’s word origins book states, “Probably the French phrase tant pour tant, so much for so much, influenced the formation of tit for tat, and possibly the Dutch dit vor dat, this for that, helped as well. But the expression derives directly from the six-century-old English phrase tip for tap, a tip at the time meaning the same as a “tap” – a light blow. As for the idea of tit for tat, a blow for a blow, the Latin quid pro quo itself has been around for over four centuries.”

Please send comments and questions to or to “Questions, Anyone?” The Alpena News, 130 Park Place, Alpena, MI 49707.