Qualifying to be a candidate on Fannin County’s local primary election finished today, March 11th at noon. Five positions have more than one candidate listed.
Four Republicans and one Democrat will run for Fannin County Sheriff. Among the candidates are two police chiefs in Fannin County: Larry Bennett of Maccaysville and Johnny Scearce of Blue Ridge. Rusty Wittenburger is the Democratic candidate. Incumbent Dane Kirby and Jack Taylor round out the field. Since Wittenburger is the only Democratic candidate, he can advance to the November elections with just one vote. Because there are four Republicans running, it is highly likely there will be a run-off in July.
In a surprise today, Marie Woody, Chief Land Development Officer for Fannin County will run against incumbent Shirley Sosebee for Tax Commissioner. Woody has served Fannin County for 35 years in the Land Development office. She believes that her current position and the fact that nearly all residents pass through her office have given her leadership and constituent experience.
Another surprising development is that the race for Probate Judge went from three potential candidate to only one, Scott Kiker. Amanda Whatley, who was in the middle of qualifying on Friday at 11:45 am decided not to complete her paperwork. Lynne Wagoner withdrew her candidacy on Friday. Wagoner stated that she withdrew because she wanted to support Scott Kiker’s candidacy.
Currently, there are three candidates for Sandra Mercier’s seat on the Fannin County Board of Education. Mercier decided not to run this year. The Chief Magistrate position also has three candidates: Sherri Walker, Brian Jones and Denette Davis.
The other position with more than one candidate is Commission Chairman, with both Stan Helton and Bill Simonds qualifying. For the complete list of candidates scroll to the bottom of the page.
Now, the candidate list will be sent to Kennesaw State University which prepares all the ballots, paper and electronic, for the state of Georgia. Added to Fannin’s ballots will be the Georgia Senate and House District candidates and the US Senate and House candidates. There will be two ballots to choose from in the May 24th primary, the Republican and the Democrat ballot. Non-partisan candidates will appear on both ballots. Voters going into the primaries must choose either a Republican or Democrat ballot. This means that if a person wants to vote Republican locally and Democrat state-wide or vice-versa, the voter must choose which party ballot is most important to him or her. It is not possible to vote one party locally and another party state-wide. In the November General Election, though, candidates from all parties will be on the ballot
Each election, whether national, local, run-off or special costs $20,000 to $25,000 for Fannin County to conduct. Fannin has 16,931 voters. Due to the importance of this election year, Fannin County Registration and Elections office expects very high turnout and thus a need for more poll workers. If anyone would like to be a poll worker, please contact the Board of Registration and Elections at 706-632-7740.
Offices and Candidates
Commission Chair: incumbent Bill Simonds – R, Stan Helton – R
Commissioner Post 1: incumbent Earl Johnson – R
Sheriff: incumbent Dane Kirby – R, Larry Bennett – R, Johnny Scearce – R, Jack Taylor – R, Rusty Whittenburger –D
Clerk of Court – incumbent Dana Chastain – R
Tax Commissioner – incumbent Shirley Sosebee – R, Marie Woody – R
Chief Magistrate – incumbent Sherri Walker, Brian Jones, Denette Davis
Probate Judge – incumbent Scott Kiker
Coroner – incumbent Becky Callihan
Surveyor – incumbent Shelly Bishop
School Board Terry Bramlett Seat – Terry Bramlett
School Board Lewis DeWeese Seat – Lewis DeWeese
School Board to Succeed Sandra Mercier – Jeremy Davis, Chad Galloway, Junior Farmer