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District 4 supervisor race is three-man contest

The current supervisor, a former worker on the District 4 road crew and an expert in the oil and gas industry are three Republican candidates vying for a seat on the county board.

Incumbent Eddie Brown hopes to be re-elected to serve another four-year term while Jesse Butler and Johnny Richardson both have plans to unseat him. The race could be decided in the primary election Tuesday, but if no candidate earns more than 50 percent of the vote Tuesday, the top two vote-getters will face each other in a runoff Aug. 27 and a winner will be determined then.

The candidates for District 4 supervisor are listed below in alphabetical order.

C.E. “Eddie” Brown, 63, current supervisor for Lincoln County District 4

Experience for the position: I have 44 years of experience in county and state road work, bridge construction and federal projects with 12 of those years serving as your Lincoln County District 4 supervisor. I have collaborated with county, state aid and federal engineers to ensure that projects have been completed in a timely manner and within budget. I receive yearly training through the Mississippi Association of Supervisors to remain up-to-date on legislative decision and the latest developments in road and bridge construction. They also educate us on the most modern methods of management of county facilities including jails and hospitals.

What steps will you take as supervisor to ensure that the people of Lincoln County have a voice at public meetings and that the county’s business will be conducted in a transparent manner?

All board meetings are open to the public and I encourage attendance. Participants are allowed to be on the agenda and address the board with their concerns. Executive sessions for legal and personnel issues are the only time the public is not allowed to be present. I also maintain an active office at 1280 Bogue Chitto Road and have an open-door policy.

Based on the budget you are provided, how do you intend to not only maintain, but improve infrastructure without raising taxes?

During the last four years, I have worked to obtain over $1.2 million in federal funds to improve Lincoln County roads and $3.73 million through federal and state grant programs and appropriations to improve District 4 roads and bridges. We have replaced 12 bridges and resealed numerous roads while completing routine maintenance with county funds. I will continue to work tirelessly over the next four years to seek assistance from outside sources to improve our roads and bridges while stretching the country’s funds to improve and maintain the roads.

What do you believe are the three most important duties of a county supervisor — ranked in order of importance — and what experience do you have to fulfill those duties?

The three most important duties I see as your county supervisor are managing the county budget while promoting support for our county’s hospital and educational facilities, maintaining our roads and bridges with future projects already in the works and promoting industrial and retail development to grow our communities. As the incumbent with previous experience fulfilling these duties, I would continue my current path.

Johnny Richardson, 65, oil and gas drilling consultant

Experience for the position: I have experience in leadership roles. It is important to have a good working relationship with crew members and the people who a person works for. I will be working for the voters of District 4 and our county.

What steps will you take as supervisor to ensure that the people of Lincoln County have a voice at public meetings and that the county’s business will be conducted in a transparent manner?

Board meetings have an open-door policy already in place. The meetings are recored and can be published publicly unless in the matter of an executive session called. I will be available for all the citizens in District 4 as well as countywide. I feel each person in our county should fairly and without discrimination be represented at our board meetings. Their concerns about our roads, our schools and the economic development of our county must be at the forefront of my duties as their supervisor.

Based on the budget you are provided, how do you intend to not only maintain, but improve infrastructure without raising taxes

I know that each district has a budget to work within. By having that budget outlined, there should be room to complete any projects that are already begun on our roads and bridges. By working with any local, state or federal offices available to the board of supervisors, I hope to find innovative ways to help fund any new projects or ongoing jobs that our county and my district needs. I would ask myself and my fellow board members to exhaust all possibilities for outside help from these agencies before asking for any tax increase on our citizens.

What do you believe are the three most important duties of a county supervisor — ranked in order of importance — and what experience do you have to fulfill those duties?

I feel that listening to the thoughts and any concerns of the citizens in my district and the county, as a whole, should be an important thing for a supervisor. The citizens are placing their trust in whomever they put into office.

Safe roads, upgraded bridges and funding should be of great importance.

Economic development for our county is a major concern.

Jesse Butler, 69, no employment listed

Experience for the seat: Worked on the District 4 road crew for four and a half years.

What steps will you take as supervisor to ensure that the people of Lincoln County have a voice at public meetings and that the county’s business will be conducted in a transparent manner?

I would invite anyone who is interested in county business to all meetings. I will work with all other elected officials on all county business.

Based on the budget you are provided, how do you intend to not only maintain, but improve infrastructure without raising taxes?

Cut out all unnecessary overhead, keep expenses low, get bids when having to use contracts and use low bidder, complete all work on a road once you start it.

What do you believe are the three most important duties of a county supervisor — ranked in order of importance — and what experience do you have to fulfill those duties?

Make sure our tax dollars are spent where needed most, provide safety equipment and tools for hands, work to bring in new industries for jobs.

Election information

Election Day for primaries is Tuesday with a runoff, if needed, set for Aug. 27. General Election Day is Nov. 5.

Absentee voting is underway today from 8 a.m. to noon at the Lincoln County Circuit Clerk’s office.

People may vote absentee for several reasons, including if they will be out of town on election day, if they are temporarily or permanently disabled or if they are 65 or older, Lincoln County Circuit Clerk Dustin Bairfield said.

To see sample primary ballots, visit www.lincolncircuitcourt.com and click on “elections.”