Voting

When Kenneth K.C. Carson lost in a runoff for a seat on the Adairsville City Council last fall, he couldn’t have imagined he would be mayor of the city seven months later, but that’s the position Carson finds himself in this morning.

Carson, owner of an appliance shop and private security service, defeated Adena Harper and Ronnie Everett in a special election Tuesday to replace Evan King as mayor. King resigned for undisclosed personal reasons earlier this year. Carson received 256 votes to 161 for Harper and 59 for Everett in the nonpartisan race.

Bartow County residents overwhelmingly approved liquor by the drink sales in the unincorporated areas of the county. The final tally was 4,874 yes votes to 2,936 against the beverage sales. At the same time, Bartow voters also approved Sunday liquor by the drink sales, 4,554 yes to 3,289 no.

Derrick Keeney won the GOP nomination for a seat on the Bartow County Board of Education, beating Deanna Berry by a margin of 566 to 525. There is no Democratic opposition.

Only 16.6 percent of Bartow County’s registered voters turned out for the primary.

Polk voters pass ELOST

Polk County voters will continue contributing a penny on every dollar of their purchases toward local education spending after Tuesday’s primary.

Voters will also be heading back to the polls July 22 to decide a run-off for the Tallapoosa Circuit Superior Court judge seat.

Numbers from the election office indicate 25.96 percent of the 17,638 registered voters came out to the polls Tuesday.

The $25 million education local option sales tax will be used to fund building and renovations, technology upgrades and other items.

The vote was 54.9 percent in favor of the ELOST with a total of 2,456 yes votes to 2,012 no votes.

Superintendent William Hunter said he was happy voters decided to approve the measure.

“I’m just appreciative of the people here in Polk County for passing this, and we’re going to be great stewards of their money and trust,” he said.

Polk and Haralson County voters will need another round of voting to decide who will win the Tallapoosa Circuit Superior Court judge seat.

The race, featuring Rockmart attorney Vickey Atkins, Municipal Court Judge Andrew Roper, Juvenile Court Judge Chuck Morris and Haralson County attorney Meng Lim came down to the wire.

Lim held a slight lead with 35 percent of the vote, but didn’t receive enough to gain a majority for the win. Morris was in second with 28 percent, followed by Atkins with 21.8 percent and Roper with 14.2 percent.

Lim and Morris will be in the runoff.

The Polk County Commission will get a new member and keep two incumbents.

Republican Jason Ward, the GOP incumbent for the District 1 Commission seat, won 54.3 to 45.6 percent over Cleve Hartley, who was formerly on the board.

“I’m excited about the victory and what it means for Polk County,” Ward said.

Republican Jennifer Hulsey, who took a strong lead and kept it all night in the County Commission District 2 race, won with 59.99 percent of the vote. Incumbent Phillip Bentley carried 22.5 percent of the vote, and Ricky Clark finished with 17.4 percent of the total vote. There are no Democrats running.

Gordon incumbents fare well

After the votes were counted, Republican incumbents Becky Hood and Chad Steward kept their seats on the Gordon County Commission. Republican Charlie Walraven won Gordon County School Board Post 1 and the school board Post 7 race will see a runoff.

Hood earned 2,206 votes in the District 4 race, which gave her 56.16 percent of the votes cast.

“I’m very excited,” Hood said. “I appreciate everyone who came out and supported me. I want to continue the momentum we have going in the community and I thank everyone for their vote.”

Steward received 1,984 votes in District 2, which gave him 51.77 percent of the vote over competitor Ricky Lee Smith, who received 48.23 percent of the primary vote.

“I want to thank the Lord, because without him none of this would be possible. I want to thank him, my family, my friends and my church family,” Steward said. “I’m proud to serve the residents of Gordon County for another four years.”

Walraven took the Gordon County Board of Education Post 1 with 58.18 percent of the votes.

“I’m really excited about it,” Walraven said. “I’m somewhat surprised that I got that many votes my first time out. I beat two good people.

I’m excited to work for the children of Gordon County the next four years.”

However, in the Gordon County Board of Education Post 7 race, there will be a runoff on July 22 between Republicans Ricky E. Smith and Maurice Jones. Smith had 41.39 percent of the vote, while Jones had 37.2 percent of the votes.

There were no Democrats running in local races.

Some changes in Catoosa

In Tuesday’s primary election, one incumbent on the Catoosa County Board of Commissioners held off his challenger, while another incumbent was defeated.

All the candidates are Republicans. There are no Democratic challengers, which means Tuesday’s primary decided who will serve.

In the race for the District 4 seat, incumbent Dewayne Hill lost with 458 votes (48.6 percent) to challenger Ray Johnson’s 485 votes (51.4 percent). District 4 includes the Boynton and Westside precincts in the eastern portion of the county.

District 2 commissioner Bobby Winters easily defeated Fred Loyd, with Winters taking 523 votes (67 percent) to Loyd’s 257 votes (33 percent). District 2 includes the Blackstock, Catoosa Keith, Poplar Springs and Woodstation precincts in the northwestern portion of the county.

Library tax dies in Walker

Walker County voters said yes to booze but no to books in two referendums Tuesday. Turnout was just below 18 percent.

The library referendum asked voters to approve a quarter of a mil tax hike that would be used solely for the financial support of the county’s three public libraries. It was denied by a 54 percent to 46 percent margin.

That proposal would have nearly doubled county taxpayer support Cherokee Regional Library System branches in Chickamauga, LaFayette and Rossville.

The other referendum on Tuesday’s ballot concerned the sale of liquor in restaurants in the unincorporated area of the county. It passed with 56 percent of the vote.

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