After 17 days of early voting in the Rome City election concluded Friday, a total of 1,150 local voters had cast their ballots in person and by mail.

So far, that’s a 6% turn-out of Rome’s 19,179 registered voters.

There were still 21 absentee ballots that had not yet been returned to the Floyd County Elections Office by the end of the day Friday, according to Chief Elections Clerk Robert Brady.

He said if they are received by close of business Tuesday, they will be counted along with all votes cast in the 12-hour voting period Nov. 5.

Two overseas military ballots from the Middle East and “near Asia” have until close of business Thursday to be returned as long as they are mailed by Election Day.

“I doubt they’ll make it in time,” Brady said of the overseas ballots, adding, however, that he’s pleased with the way the election has gone so far.

“We’ve had absolutely zero issues with equipment or registrations, other than some voters being turned away because they didn’t live within city limits. I like it when things work the way they’re supposed to.”

Brady said one Cave Spring resident who used to live in Rome even tried to vote this past week.

“That one had me scratching my head,” he said with a laugh.

Rome’s citizens will have one more chance, tomorrow from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., to have their say in the race for City Commission and whether local establishments that have alcohol as at least 50% of their sales should be able to serve drinks as early as 11 a.m. on Sundays.

At stake are three commission seats in each of two wards. Voters from anywhere in Rome can vote for all wards.

Ward 3 is guaranteed to have a fresh face as there are four candidates and only two incumbents running for reelection: Bill Collins and Craig McDaniel. Commissioner Evie McNiece is not running for another term as she is in the process of moving out of ward boundaries.

Hoping to be the new kid on the block for the next four years are Ward 3 challengers J.J. Walker Seifert and Bonny Askew.

In Ward 1, five candidates are fighting for the three spots currently held by Bill Irmscher, Milton Slack and Sundai Stevenson. Their challengers are Jim Bojo and Mark Cochran.

Commissioners are expected to serve on various subcommittees, as well, and are compensated $8,400 per year for their service.

The “Brunch Bill” referendum voters will see on the ballot was born out of a ruling by the Georgia House of Representatives in March of last year allowing communities to decide for themselves whether they want patrons to be able to partake in a mimosa or bloody mary during Sunday brunch.

Approval would push back the pour-time from 12:30 p.m. to 11 a.m. It does not apply to liquor stores.

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