Candidates in this year’s municipal elections are in the final stages of their campaigns, with races in Jackson and Flovilla being decided Nov. 5.
Early voting will continue through Nov. 1 at the voter registration office at 625 W. Third St., Jackson. The last day to register to vote in the municipal elections was Oct. 7. Voting on Election Day — from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. — will be at the Jackson Municipal Court Building, at 132 S. Mulberry St., for Jackson voters, and at Flovilla City Hall, 308 Heard St., for Flovilla voters.
Jackson City Councilman Don Cook will face a challenge from former city fire department captain David Dunn for the District 4 seat.
Cook, who is retired, has been on the council since winning a special election to the seat in 2013. He began his first full term on the council in 2016.
Cook, 66, said he wants to continue the work started during his tenure on the council.
“We just want to continue to help the citizens of Jackson,” Cook said. “I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished in the last six years, and we’ve got some more stuff we’re working on we want to see finished.”
Dunn, 43, is a fire marshal and inspector with the city of Sandy Springs Fire Marshal’s Office. He had previously worked for 18 years for the city of Jackson Fire Department, until July 2018.
He said he would work on the council to improve infrastructure around the city of Jackson.
“I would like to see some infrastructure improvements, mainly with the water system,” Dunn said. “Also, I’d like to attract some industry, because we need jobs, we need stuff for people to do in the city.”
District 1 Jackson City Councilman Theodore Patterson and District 5 Councilwoman Beth S. Weaver qualified for re-election to their posts uncontested, according to City Clerk Brittany Brown.
In Flovilla, Mayor Beth Burns Ogletree will be challenged for re-election by former mayor Harvey Norris.
It will be the third contest in recent years featuring the two candidates, who first faced off in 2014 in a special election to fill the unexpired term of Scott Chewning.
Ogletree won the 2014 race against Norris, and fended off a challenge from him again in 2015 for a full four-year term.
Norris had been Flovilla’s mayor or held a seat on the City Council for a total of 27 years prior to being unseated as mayor by Chewning in 2011 after a 19-year tenure in the post.
Norris, 68, has been the chief of the Jackson Fire Department for 14 years. He’s also been pastor of New Hope Baptist Church in Flovilla for the past eight years.
He said he’s running again to make changes in Flovilla.
“I’ve been asked to run again to make some changes — some improvements to the services that are being provided and to try to lower the water bills and garbage bills,” Norris said.
He said he would also like to encourage more patrols in the city by Butts County Sheriff’s Office deputies, and that he might look to recreate the Flovilla Municipal Court, which was abolished by an act of the General Assembly earlier this year at the request of the current administration.
“Income is income, regardless of where it comes from and a small place like Flovilla needs income,” Norris said.
Ogletree, 44, is a human resources coordinator for Southern Crescent Technical College in Griffin and said she wants to continue making improvements in the city.
She pointed to the start Monday of construction work funded by a state Community Development Block Grant to replace water lines along a portion of Ga. Highway 42. She said she would like the city to apply for another similar grant to help pay for more improvements.
“I would like to continue to move the city forward as my team has done the past five years,” she said.
She said she would also work to get streets in the city paved and to help the volunteer fire department expand.
Also on the ballot in Flovilla will be elections to fill three seats on the City Council.
According to City Clerk Annie Mitchell, candidates Lillian Cowell, John Burdin and Jacqueline Grier qualified in August to run for a two-year term to fill the seat vacated in April by the resignation of Chadrick Morgan.
James C. Hosford, Willie Morgan and David Smith will vie in a three-way race for two seats on the council, with the top two vote-getters winning four-year terms. Hosford and Willie Morgan are incumbents in those seats.
Because only incumbents qualified for re-election in the city of Jenkinsburg, City Clerk Debi Smith said the election was being called off. Returning to the mayoral seat for a second consecutive term will be Eddie Ford, who has previously also served as a council member and as mayor.
Susan Barabas, the Post 1 council member, and Kenneth Rooks, the Post 3 member, will also be returning to their seats for four-year terms.