More candidates ready for elections

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 17, 2004

As municipal elections draw near more and more people are answering the call for office.

Though qualifying has only been open for a week and a half some competition has arisen in Georgiana.

In Georgiana, incumbent Mayor Lynn H. Watson will be challenged by Larry Creech.

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There has also been a challenge in the city council stemming from the retirement of District 2 council member Ann Jean Abrams. She decided to retire after two terms on the council.

&uot;She announced earlier that she would not be running again,&uot; said Georgiana City Clerk Barbara Clem. &uot;She will be the only existing member not running. All the other existing members have qualified.&uot;

Two new candidates will vie for the District 2 position in August.

Robert Cheatham and Jay Cobb have qualified to fill the seat, which Abrams will vacate.

Mike Middleton will defend his District 1 seat while Jackie C. Gandy will try to defend his District 3 slot.

Robert Wilson has qualified again for the District 4 seat and Jerry M. Peak has rounded out the field qualifying for his District 5 position.

In Mckenzie, two of the existing council members have thrown their hat in the ring for another term.

Greg Lampley Sr. will again run for District 1 councilman and Lester Odom Jr. will run for his District 2 spot.

Both are unopposed. No other positions have been qualified for.

McKenzie City Clerk Tina Brooks said others should soon qualify.

&uot;Right now we are just waiting for them,&uot; said Brooks. &uot;We’re just waiting for more people to come in and qualify.&uot;

Qualifying, which began July 6 will continue until July 20.

Qualifying will be open until 5 p.m. in Georgiana and 4 p.m. in McKenzie on that date.

Qualifying fees in Georgiana are $25 for the mayor’s race as well as city council.

In McKenzie, qualifying for the mayor’s race will be $25. City council qualifying will cost only $10.

In Greenville, the field remains unchanged from last week.

As of Friday afternoon, all the incumbents were qualified to run for reelection.

Mayor Dexter McLendon currently has no opposition.

In the District 1 race, the incumbent Susan Samford Murphy is facing opposition from Dr. Jean A. Thompson.

In the District 2 race, the incumbent, Ed Sims will face Percy C. Nixon.

District 3 incumbent Otto Duke faces two challengers from Tommy Ryan and Phillip Graham.

Neither Council incumbents James Lewis, nor Jeddo Bell have opposition at this time for Districts 4 and 5.

The deadline to qualify is July 20 by 5 p.m. and the cost is $50.

Elections will be held on Aug. 24, with a runoff on Sept. 14 if necessary.

Prior to the three municipal elections, a countywide polling school will be held at Greenville City Hall.

The school will take place on Aug. 12 at 10 a.m. and will serve poll workers from all over the county.

Greenville City Clerk Linda Vandenbosch said they would learn a variety of things at the school.

This is a meeting strictly for the people that will be working at the polls on Election Day,&uot; said Vandenbosch. &uot;It will help them learn what to do on Election Day and get them familiar with the routine.&uot;

Vandenbosch said the poll workers who attend would depend on how many people face contention.

&uot;If we do not have anyone qualified to run against someone there will not be a citywide election,&uot; said Vandenbosch. &uot;In that case there will just be elections between those with competition.&uot;

Vandenbosch said there is still plenty of time to qualify.

&uot;We still have a few days so anything can happen,&uot; said Vandenbosch. &uot;We’ll know when qualifying is over who will need to come to the school.&uot;

Also, the Greenville Advocate’s City Political Forum is set for 5:30 p.m. on Aug. 16 at Greenville High School’s auditorium.

To date the only candidate who has confirmed she will participate is Thompson.

The forum is for Greenville’s candidates only.

For those wishing to participate, they should call Managing Editor Jay Thomas at 383-9302, ext. 136.