Political plots thicken as qualifying deadline nears
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This Friday is final day for candidates to qualify to seek elected office
From Staff Reports
This Friday, Mar. 1, 2019, at 5 p.m. marks the deadline for area residents interested in seeking elected office to qualify as candidates.
With just a couple of days left on the political calendar, the 2019 election cycle is shaping up to be a mixed bag. Several high-profile statewide offices are producing a lot of interest, while many of the local positions have drawn just one candidate, and in some cases, none through mid-day Tuesday.
Of the seven county-wide offices on the ballot, only longtime Sheriff Stanley McLeod, had drawn an opponent at press time. Larry L. Byrd, of Sand Hill, qualified late last week to challenge McLeod in that race. The two won’t square off until the November General Election as McLeod is running on the Democratic ticket, while Byrd qualified as a Republican.
Chancery Clerk Michelle D. ‘Shelley’ Eubanks, Circuit Clerk Cecelia Bounds, Coroner Ladd Pulliam, Tax Assessor Mark Holder and County Prosecutor Lee Turner remained unopposed on Tuesday. The other county-wide post, that of county surveyor, is currently unoccupied and there are no candidates qualified to seek the post at this time.
Among the members of the Greene County Board of Supervisors, Dist. One’s G.L. Dearman was the only incumbent to not have an opponent listed as of Tuesday. In Dist. Two, longtime Supervisor Morris Hill has qualified and appears set to face off against current and longtime Dist. Two employee Dorothy Mimbes-Woods in the Democratic Primary in August.
In Dist. Three, incumbent Jerry Mills is seeking a second term, but will face Wayburn D. ‘Danny’ Smith in the Republican Primary. Republican incumbent Wayne Barrow has drawn at least one primary challenger in Dist. Four as Cecil Pat Dickerson has qualified to challenge him in August. Neville Nate Williams and Stuart McLeod have both qualified on the Democratic side in Dist. Four.
With Harold Cook declaring he will not seek re-election, his Dist. Five post seems poised to be the most hotly-contested race in the county. Republicans Gary F. Fairley, Steve McCluskey and William Gammill have qualified to run for Cook’s seat, along with Democrats Lonnie A. Roberts II, Jack Howard and Clyde Sylvester.
Post One Justice Court Judge Jeff Byrd remained unopposed in his re-election bid as of Tuesday. The Post Two seat on the bench had three candidates as of Tuesday, with Republican Terril Green and Democrats Ryan Longmire and Shannon Busby on the ticket to replace L. Joe Beard, who announced he will retire from public office at the end of this term.
Post One Constable Ryan Walley has announced his intention to run via the Herald, but as of Tuesday had not submitted qualifying papers to seek re-election. At press time, however, no other candidates had qualified for the post either.
In Post Two, R.L. Denmark was the lone candidate to have qualified as of Tuesday to replace Shannon Busby, who is seeking another office.
In November, two spots on the Greene County Election Commission will be up for grabs. Dist. Three and Dist. Four are currently being served by interim commissioners Deborah Freeman and Beth Ross, respectively. Both seats will be up for grabs in special elections that will be held in conjunction with the General Election. As of Tuesday, Freeman was the only candidate to have qualified for either post. Interested candidates have until Sept. 6 to file paperwork and join the race.
The Greene County Herald will have a full report next week after Friday’s qualifying deadline.