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Candidates qualify for city elections
by Noreen Cochran
September 03, 2013 01:04 PM | 2599 views | 0 0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Mayors going for another term and council members trying to retain their seats mark the 2013 city election scene in Henry County.

In Hampton, Mayor Chris Moore will meet his previous opponent Steve Hutchison, whom he narrowly defeated in a special election March 19 to fill the unexpired term of the late Raiford Walker “R.W.” Coley, who died in October.

With turnout at 10 percent of the 4,000 registered voters, newcomer Moore captured 51 percent of the votes, beating Hutchison by nine votes.

Hutchison served five years on the city council, which he resigned to run for mayor.

Running to fill his unexpired term of two years are Zakery Daniel and Frederick DeRuvo.

In the fight for three four-year terms, city council incumbents Mary Ann Mitcham, Marty Meeks and Charlie Hearn will try to fend off challengers Carlton Grant, Ann N. Tarpley and Arley J. Lowe Jr.

The Locust Grove election for three council members at large has a field occupied by incumbents Keith Boone, James “Sam” Rosser and Sammy Brown.

They will face former City Councilwoman Viann Doerr, who has thrown her hat back in the ring, and Donald Dunlap.

There is no election for mayor, a post held by Robert Price.

McDonough Mayor Billy Copeland will compete against former District 3 city councilman Wayne Smith.

The special election to fill the District 3 seat will be on the Nov. 5 ballot. Qualifying for it began Tuesday and will run through today.

In the regular election for an at-large council seat, incumbent Rufus Amis, Swaine Thompson, who ran for District 3 in 2011, Vincent Smith and Roger Pruitt, who ran in 2005 and 2009 for mayor and in 2007 for city council, will battle it out.

In District 1, Councilman Rufus Stewart is running for reelection unopposed.

District 2 Councilwoman Sandra Vincent will fight to keep her seat against her 2012 special election challenger, former city planning commissioner Darryl Payton.

In Stockbridge, Mayor Mark Alarcon will take on Timothy Thompson, former City Clerk Vanessa Holiday and Houston Nelson III, who ran for city council in 2011.

Qualified to run for the two at-large city council posts are Bruce Smith, Anthony Ford, Tonja Meadows and incumbents Harold Cochran and Shirley Dabney.

Also on the ballot will be the county-wide referendum to extend the 1-cent sales tax.

Over six years, a potential $190 million in special purpose local option sales tax collections could be realized.

The county’s portion of 75 percent is slated to yield $142.5 million for its projects.

This includes about $100 million to be split between the five districts.

The balance of $42.5 million will be for county-wide Priority 1 expenditures, which include fire stations, police cars, ambulances, a 911 radio upgrade and a $4 million police station.

The four cities will split the remaining 25 percent, or $47.5 million, in shares based on population.

Stockbridge will collect about 43 percent, or about $20.3 million

McDonough will reap nearly 37 percent, or about $17.4 million

Hampton is slated to earn about 12 percent, or about $5.5 million

Locust Grove’s share is 9 percent, or about $4.3 million.

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