Municipal races develop

Published 2:58 pm Sunday, July 19, 2015

A few last-minute filers helped complete the November municipal election ballots in the Roanoke-Chowan area after Friday’s noon deadline at the county Boards of Elections.  There were just three municipalities in the area where all incumbents filed for re-election, thus setting up quite a few interesting races across the region.

In Hertford County, Ahoskie Mayor Brien Lassiter will not be seeking a second term.  Current Ward-B town councilman Rev. C. David Stackhouse will seek the mayor’s office; and he will be opposed in November by Jimmie Lee Rowe.  Should Stackhouse win the seat, he would have to vacate his town council seat and a new person would be have to be appointed to council to fill out the term which does not expire until 2017.

Elsewhere in Ahoskie, Ward-B incumbent Councilman Maurice Vann will be opposed by Donald Kirkland, who filed early for that seat.  In Ahoskie Ward-A, long time Councilwoman Elaine Myers will not seek re-election to another term.  Matt Bradley filed earlier this week seeking the office and is currently running unopposed.

In Cofield, incumbent mayor Hermea Pugh, Sr. will face opposition in currently Councilman Darrell Partlow, as well as from Kirk Taylor in what shapes up as a three-man race. Cofield town council features five seats up for election. Incumbents Anthony Archer and Stephen Lassiter have filed for re-election with Hermea Pugh, Jr., Dacia Sutton, and June Wynn seeking the offices.

Como was one of the three municipalities where the incumbents all filed for re-election from Mayor Irvin Stephens to council members Lorie Higbee, Susan Kennington, Stephen Pearce and Ann Spruill for the four town council seats.

Harrellsville will have a new mayor, as Bob Dantz did not seek re-election and Mary Louise Thompson is currently running for the seat unopposed.  Five seats on Harrellsville town council are up for election with only four filers: incumbents Deborah Baker, Lisa Hunnicutt, and Roy Worrells seeking another term while Ronnie Revell is a newcomer seeking a council seat.  The fifth seat could be decided by write-in vote.

Speaking of write-in, that is how the Murfreesboro mayor’s office will be decided this November.  Hertford County’s Board of Elections will not extend the filing period and as of the close of filing on Friday, no one had filed for that office.  Current mayor John Hinton had told the News-Herald earlier that he would not be seeking another term.  Six candidates have filed for five seats on the Murfreesboro Town Council. Current councilpersons Craig Dennis, Randy Roberts, Sarah Wallace, and Hal Thomas have filed for re-election while former Councilman Bill Theodorakis and newcomer John Porter are seeking office.

Finally in Hertford County, Winton mayor Tiffany Lewis faces opposition in Whitney Farmer and six candidates will be on the ballot for five Winton town council seats: incumbents Blake Blythe, Wesley and Will Liverman, Emily Winstead, and McCoy Pierce are running along with first-timer James “Bud” Manley.

In Bertie County, Powellsville mayor Thomas Asbell and the three town councilmen: James Peele, Carlyle Hoggard, and Joseph T. Watford have all filed for re-election and are running unopposed.

In Roxobel, there are nine candidates’ names on the ballot for four town council seats. Incumbents David Baisey, Stanley Harrell, Sammy Pruden, and Henry Boschen have all filed for re-election, but they’ll face plenty of opposition in the form of the five new challengers: Carolyn Bracy, Carroll Minton, Gene Mitchell, Manuel Joyner, and former Bertie County School Board member Alton Parker.   For Roxobel mayor, current office-holder Gary Johnson faces a challenger in Alvin Simmons.

Four names are on the ballot for three seats as Windsor Town Commissioner. Bobby Brown, Cathy Wilson, and Lawrence “Speedy” Carter filed for re-election with T.R. “Buddy” Shaw filing on the last day.  Jon Powell, who was appointed to fill out the unexpired term of the late Joe Alexander, will be running for his Windsor commissioner’s seat outright.

Lewiston-Woodville, which elects council members for the two separate townships and one at-large office-holder, has three running for the three seats unopposed. Incumbent Chris Cordon is running for the Lewiston seat; newcomer Michelle Gilliam for the Woodville seat, and another newcomer, James Pugh, for the at-large office.

In Kelford, Mayor Bailey Parker is running unopposed for another term, while there are five town council seats up for grabs but just four names on the ballot: James and Wayne Bland, Timmy Eaton, and Tim Emory.  A write-in could determine the other seat as Letitia Harris chose not to run again and Bertie County has made no decision as of Friday evening whether to extend the filing deadline.

In Colerain, Mayor Burney Baker announced earlier that he will not be seeking another term in office, so Thomas Waicul is running unopposed for the seat.  Two town commissioner seats are up for grabs, yet only one candidate, newcomer Jacques Turner, has filed.

Incumbent Larry Drew has filed and is running without opposition for another term as Aulander’s mayor.  Two seats are available for Aulander town commissioner and incumbent Bobbie Parker has filed to retain her seat while Tommy Hale is seeking the other.

Finally in Bertie County, Askewville commissioners Michael Baker, Kay Brantley and Carla Pesce are running unopposed for re-election, as is Askewville mayor Gloria Bryant.

In Northampton County the tightest race will be for Conway Town Commissioner where eight candidates are vying for five seats.  Incumbents Alan Harris, Willie Simmons, Gail Wade and Stewart Woodward have filed and their opposition includes Walter Lee Duke, Lokie Majette, Taylor Ward, and Christine Stephenson.   The Conway mayor’s race will be opposed also; Tommy Barrett has challenged sitting Mayor Brian Bolton.

Chemeka Williams was the only incumbent that did not seek another term for Garysburg town commissioner.  Lois Ausby, James Mayo, Iris Williams, and Woodrow Harding are all seeking re-election while Semiko Jacobs is running for the first time.  Roy Bell is running unopposed for another term as Garysburg mayor.

Newcomer Jerry Dickerson joins fellow first-time office seekers Mike Acree, Alice Delbridge, Della Johnson and James Norton on the ballot for Gaston town commissioner.  Deborah Lee James was the only incumbent to file for a commissioner’s seat.  Gaston mayor James Moore will face opposition in Donald W. Conner.

The town of Jackson will have a new mayor as Jim Gossip did not seek re-election and Jason Morris – an early filer – is running unopposed.  The two seats on town council could mean the re-election of incumbents Bill Futrell and Stevie Harrell.

In Lasker’s council race, newcomer Stevie Flythe joins incumbents Charles Daughtry and Robin Gibson vying for two available seats.  Dick Collier is running unopposed for another term as Lasker Mayor.

There’ll be all new faces in Woodland as James Garris did not seek re-election as Mayor and voters can choose either Blake Lassiter or Kenneth Manuel for that office.  Pat Liverman and Cecil Harkey are new office seekers for Woodland town commissioner.

Doris Risper has opposition for mayor of Rich Square in Peggy Cary.  Meanwhile, incumbents Charles Eason, Raymond Joyner, and Reginald White are on the ballot seeking re-election to town commissioner of Rich Square along with newcomers Larry Godwin and Marcia Majette.  Six candidates are contending for five seats.

George McGee will run unopposed for another term as mayor of Severn while three incumbents: Eloise Martin, Joseph Holloman, and Parker Wilson are seeking to retain their Severn town commissioner seats with newcomers Paige Pinnix and Tony Herman also on the ballot in a contest for five seats.

Finally in Northampton County, Seaboard is the only municipality with no mayoral race; Ruth Bek is on ballot for town commissioner, and the second of the two seats could go to Geraldine Langford.

There are three candidates on the ballot for Roanoke Rapids Sanitary District Board of Directors: Gene St. Clair, Steve Holliday, and Jack Barber.