Saturday July 11th, 2020 9:24AM

Municipal, special elections set Nov. 5 across North Georgia

By Rob Moore, B.J. Williams

Voters across the state will go to the polls Tuesday, Nov. 5, to decide races for municipal offices and other special election issues. A number of North Georgia voters will have a chance to cast ballots in their hometowns.

*Banks County

Town of Homer
In Banks County, the Town of Homer does not have an election this year.

*Dawson County

Dawson County voters will be asked to cast their votes for an extension of an Education Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax. The ESPLOST amounts to $48 million. Approval of the penny sales tax extension would also constitute approval of $10 million worth of general obligation bonds for the school district.

City of Dawsonville
Incumbent Mayor Michael M. Eason faces a challenge by Durant Wright in Tuesday's election. 
No election is necessary for City Council Post 1 or City Council Post 3. Incumbent Caleb Phillips is unopposed in the Post 1 race, while John H. Walden was the only qualifier for Post 3. 

*Forsyth County

City of Cumming
A citywide special election will be held asking voters to decide on a Sunday "brunch bill" to extend sales hours for alcohol by the drink on Sundays.
Three candidates will vie for Post 3 on the Cumming City Council. Joey Cochran, Jason May and Brent Patrick are running for the seat held by longtime incumbent Lewis Ledbetter, who is retiring at the end of the year. Incumbent council members Linda Ledbetter and Christopher Light have no opposition for Post 4 and 5, respectively. 

*Habersham County

In Habersham County, voters will decide on a $31.7-million jail bond referendum and a successor to fill the balance of the District 5 term (13 months) on the Habersham County Commission.
Additionally, Cornelia, Demorest and Tallulah Falls will hold elections for municipal government positions on Nov. 5, Clarkesville and Cornelia voters will decide Sunday Brunch Bills.

Town of Alto
In Alto, incumbent Mayor Audrey Turner qualified unopposed, as did incumbent Post 4 Councilman Eddie Palmer. John Allen Fox Jr. qualified unopposed for the Post 3 seat left vacant by the death of Mike Ivie.
No one qualified initially for the Post 2 seat left vacant by the resignation of John Closs, who left the post due to health issues and now has moved out of the county. When qualifying was reopened by the town, James N. Turner qualified unopposed for the Post 2 seat. No election will be required.
City of Baldwin
Baldwin initially saw qualifiers Stephanie Almagno and Ray Holcomb qualified to face off for the open City Council Post 3, but Holcomb later withdrew his candidacy. Post 1 Councilman Larry Lewallen and Post 2 Councilman Theron Ayers qualified with no opposition. No election will be required.
City of Clarkesville
In Clarkesville, voters will decide a Brunch Bill that reads, “Shall the governing authority of the City of Clarkesville be authorized to permit and regulate Sunday sales of distilled spirits or alcoholic beverages for beverage purposes by the drink from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.?”
Post 2 Councilwoman Roxie Barron and Post 3 Councilman Terry R. Gladden both qualified unopposed for re-election.
City of Cornelia
In Cornelia, John Borrow qualified unopposed for mayor. Incumbent Mayor J.C. Irby is not seeking re-election.
Ward 1 Commissioner Wesley A. Dodd Jr. faces a challenge from former Baldwin Mayor Mark Reed, a last-minute qualifier for that seat. Ward 4 Commissioner Tony Cook qualified unopposed for re-election.
Cornelia voters also will decide a Brunch Bill, determining whether the city can start serving alcohol at 11 a.m. rather than 12:30 p.m. on Sunday.
City of Demorest
In Demorest, incumbents John Popham and Florence Wikle did not seek re-election, so Nathan W. Davis, John P. Hendrix and Jerry R. Mobley are vying for those two seats on the city council.
Town of Mt. Airy
In Mt. Airy, incumbent Councilmen Chris Green, Adam Tullis and Mike McCoy qualified unopposed for re-election. No election will be required.
Town of Tallulah Falls
In Tallulah Falls, incumbent Mayor Teri Dobbs faces a challenge from Fire Chief Mike Early. Incumbent Councilwoman Mary Beth Hughes will face off against Joey Fountain and Craig Weatherly as voters decide her seat and the one held by Carol Nelms, who did not seek re-election.

*Hall County

Hall County voters will be asked to cast ballots on an extension of the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax.  SPLOST VII projects total nearly $217 million.

No municipal elections will be necessary for Clermont, Gillsville, Lula or Oakwood, since any city council positions up for election had only one candidate qualify.

City of Flowery Branch
Incumbent Ed Asbridge, who won a special election to fill an unexpired term for Post 2 on the city council, faces opposition from David Griscom. Post 1 City Councilman Chris Mundy faces no opposition for his job. 
City of Gainesville
Ward 2 incumbent Zack Thompson and Ward 3 incumbent Barbara Brooks have no opposition Tuesday, so they will return to office. For Ward 5, vacated by the retirement of Ruth Bruner, political newcomers Bill Bush and Juli Clay are running for the post. 
For the Gainesville Board of Education, Kris Nordholz was the sole qualifier for Ward 2, while incumbent Sammy Smith is unopposed for the Ward 5 seat. Incumbent Willie Mitchell faces opposition from Chad Payne for the Ward 3 seat on the school board. 

*Jackson County

City of Arcade
Voters will select from among four candidates for three open city council seats. The candidates are incumbent Cynthia B. Bone, incumbent Shane Cox and incumbent Tom Hayes. Marsha Fields also qualified for the race. Candidate Debbie Stewart withdrew from the race. 
City of Braselton
Two city council posts will be up for vote on Tuesday. In District 1, incumbent Becky Richardson faces a challenge from Joy Basham and Richard J. Mayberry. The candidates for the District 3 post are incumbent Tony Funari and challenger Jim Joedecke, Jr. 
City of Commerce
All city council and school board posts in the city have opposition for this election. The only uncontested race is for mayor; J. Clark Hill III will return to post for another term.
The city council race for Ward 3 pits incumbent Mark Fitzpatrick against challenger Alicia Vargas; the Ward 4 race is between incumbent Bobby Redmon and challenger Sam Cotton; in Ward 5, incumbent Johnny W. Eubanks faces opposition from Eric Merrell.
For the Commerce City School Board, incumbent District 3 board member Bill Davis is opposed by Knox Smith; Kyle Moore is challenging incumbent Rodney Gary for the District 4 post; in District 5, incumbent Paul M. Sergent faces opposition from challenger Roshuanda Merritt
City of Hoschton
Two city council posts are open in Hoschton. The top two vote-getters will be elected. Candidates are incumbent Mindi H. Kiewert and challengers ShantwonAstin and Adam Ledbetter. Suzanne Owens qualified for the election, but she has dropped out of the race. 
City of Jefferson
In Jefferson, three city council posts are up for re-election, but only District 5 is contested. Incumbent Don Kupis faces a challenge from challenger Clint Roberts. District 1 incumbent Steve Kinney and District 3 incumbent Jon Howell are running unopposed for office
While all five school board posts in Jefferson are up for election, there is opposition in only District 4. Incumbent Lisa Richmond, who won a special election to fill an unexpired term on the board, faces a challenge from Dana Phillips. Incumbents Angela D'zamko (District 1), Brantley Porter (District 2), Willie L. Hughey (District 3) and Guy Dean Benson (Ward 5) will returned to office.
City of Maysville
Maysville Mayor Richard L. Presley faces a challenge for his seat from Lynn L. Villyard in Tuesday's election. 
Maysville voters also must decide between incumbent Clyde Hardy, Jr. and challenger Susan Cooley for the Ward 2 city council seat. Incumbent Scott Harper is running unopposed for the Ward 4 seat on city council. 
City of Nicholson
Mayor Jan Webster has no opposition in Tuesday's election. 
Four people are running for two open city council seats in Nicholson including incumbents Mike Barfield and Lamar Watkins. Bobby Crawford and Diane Merriweather are also running.

*Lumpkin County

City of Dahlonega
Dahlonega voters will be asked to vote on a brunch bill, which, if approved, would allow for earlier Sunday sales of alcohol by the drink.
In addition, there are three city council contests on the Nov. 5 ballot. John Ariemma and John Anthony "Tony" Owens III are running for Post 4, while incumbent Ron Larson faces opposition by Dewey Moye for Post 6. Incumbent JoAnne S. Taylor has no opposition for the Post 5 seat. 

*White County

City of Cleveland
In Cleveland, voters will decide a Sunday sales of distilled spirits referendum that would allow those sales from 11 a.m. until 11:30 p.m.
Incumbent Mayor Roy “Shan” Ash III, Ward 1 Councilwoman Nan Bowen and Ward 2 Councilwoman Annie Sutton all qualified unopposed for re-election.
City of Helen
In Helen, incumbent Commissioners Jeff Ash and Cinnamon Spurlock, 2019 mayor, qualified for re-election, as did former Commissioner Fred Garmon. Voters will decide from the three to fill two city commission seats. A mayor is selected each year from within the five elected commissioners, rather than through a public vote.

  • Associated Categories: Homepage, Local/State News, Politics
  • Associated Tags: Hoschton, Cleveland, Banks County, Habersham County, white county, Helen, Demorest, braselton, Homer, Cornelia, clarkesville, Cumming, Mt. Airy, Alto, Baldwin, Tallulah Falls
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