Franklin County returns incumbents to office

Published 5:00 am Wednesday, August 8, 2007

With all 14 precincts reporting results of Tuesday’s Democraticprimary, Franklin County officials say most of the county’sincumbents have returned to their offices.

Only a few races are yet to be determined.

The race for Supervisor District One is a close one, saidFranklin County Deputy Clerk Terri Emfinger. When votes weretabulated last night, incumbent Woodrow Wilson held the lead overElbert “Bo” Dixon Sr. by only one vote – 364 to 363.

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“I expect a recount of the box,” Emfinger said.

She added that once affidavit ballots were counted laterWednesday morning, the margin would likely change. Official resultswon’t be known until all affidavits are counted and officialresults posted.

Emfinger said one upset in the county was for Franklin CountySuperintendent of Education. Incumbent Lona Thomas was unseated byFranklin County High School Assistant Principal Dr. Grady Fleming.Thomas garnered 1,853 votes while Fleming gathered 1,987 votes.Emfinger said Thomas had been superintendent for more than 10years.

Franklin County also saw a surge in voters, Emfinger said.

“If I had to guess, over 65 percent voted,” she said.

She attributed the increase in voting to the interest in severallocal races, especially in the supervisor contests. SupervisorIncumbents returning to office according to Emfinger includeDistrict Two Chad Smith, District Three George Collins, DistrictFour Jerry L. Howell and District Five J.L. Ezell.

In other races, several incumbents will go back into office.They include Coroner Percy Peeler, Sheriff James Newman, ChanceryClerk, W.P. “Sonny” Dickey Jr, Circuit Clerk Millie Thornton, TaxAssessor and Collector Thomas J. “Jeff” Mullins, Constable DistrictOne Charles Brown and Constable District Two Michael Gilbert.Justice Court Judge District One Jerry “Pudgie” Crane will faceRepublican opponent Chuck Bolt in the November generalelection.

Overall, Emfinger reported the county had few problems, exceptfor a few printer jams with the voting machines.