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Supreme Court: Candidate didn't qualify

POSTED: October 31, 2012 11:01 a.m.

The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday upheld a Liberty County Board of Elections decision to disqualify an area resident from the 2011 Hinesville municipal elections.
Douglas Burgess, who attempted to run for the Hinesville City Council District 4 seat, challenged the election results after being disqualified from running and appealed the deci-
sion to the state Supreme Court. The court’s ruling affirms the election results.
Burgess, who served on the Allenhurst City Council until April 2011 and qualified Sept. 1, 2011, to run for Hinesville City Council District 4, was declared ineligible to run in Hinesville on grounds that he did not meet a 12-month residency requirement of the Hinesville City Charter.
Burgess attempted to appeal two separate hearings in which he was disqualified, one on Sept. 23, 2011, and another on Oct. 14, 2011. According to the Georgia Supreme Court ruling issued Monday, Burgess made a timely appeal to the Sept. 23 ruling, but did not file an appeal to the Oct. 14 disqualification order.
Burgess contended that he has lived in Hinesville since November 2009 and appealed to the Liberty County Superior Court.
The Courier was unable to reach Burgess by press time, but he offered comments in early October after presenting oral arguments.
“If they don’t rule in my favor, I’ll appeal it to the U.S. Supreme Court,” Burgess previously said, adding that he felt the proceeding went well.  
The case was argued before the Georgia Supreme Court on Oct. 2, with Burgess representing himself and Kelly Davis representing the Liberty County Board of Elections.
“Election disputes oftentimes present difficult questions for the members of our board of elections. In deciding such matters, their chief concern has, and will always be, the integrity of our electoral process. The matter involving Mr. Burgess was no different,” Davis said. “Ms. Golden, Chairman Braun and the other members of the board are to be commended for their good, selfless and hard work in this matter.”

Courier reporter Randy C. Murray contributed to this report.

 

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