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Election season looms
Constitutional officers to be decided in November
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By Friday afternoon, rumors will be put to rest when the list of those who intend to seek elected office in November should be official.

Candidate qualifying for this year’s partisan and nonpartisan elections will run from 9 a.m. Wednesday to noon Friday.

“Once qualifying ends at noon, we process the list and give it over to the state secretary,” Elections Supervisor Ella Golden said. “Then from there, everything is getting ready for July.”

The July 31 election is a local primary for partisan races and ballot amendments such as the Transportation Investment Act penny sales tax also known as TSPLOST. The general election is Nov. 6.  

And so far, candidates are employing different strategies as they gear up for their campaign seasons.

Incumbent Sheriff Steve Sikes has had an advertising campaign for more than a month, and board of education District 2 challenger Carolyn Smith Carter put up signs shortly after.

But Carter’s opponent, incumbent Charlie J. Frasier, said he has kept his activities more subdued on the advice of friends and family.

“I’m going to qualify the 23rd. After the 23rd, I’m going to run my campaign,” Frasier said. “I’m planning on winning.”

Frasier and Smith Carter are among candidates who will run along district lines. BoE districts 1, 2 and 3 are up for grabs as in a nonpartisan race.

Partisan board of commissioners contenders will be on July 31 primary ballots for seats 4, 5, and 6.

Also up for election is the BoC chairman partisan seat. Incumbent John McIver announced earlier that we will not seek re-election. District 2 Commissioner Donald Lovette announced he will run for the post.

“I wish them all the best, but politics, I’m winding this thing down right now,” McIver said with a laugh.

“To run for a position that is countywide, you’ve got a lot of work to do, …,” he added. “Even if you’re running for a district, you should have the county’s interest at heart, not just your district as a whole,”

Other partisan seats for grabs this year include the county’s constitutional officers; sheriff, coroner, tax commissioner, chief magistrate, probate court judge, state court solicitor and clerk of superior court. State representative and two state senate seats are also open in the region.

Nonpartisan state and superior court judge seats also are open.

Superior Court Clerk Barry Wilkes said he has been campaigning for the last two months.

“It’s a very costly and a very expensive process,” Wilkes said. “It takes a lot of time, you have to have a lot of help from a lot of good people … You have to really go door-to-door and see people … I want people to meet me, and I want to hear what they’ve got to say.”

2012 Elections
• July 31: General primary/nonpartisan/special election allows voters to cast ballots on local nonpartisan candidates, the Transportation Investment Act 1-percent sales tax referendum and any other ballot items
• Nov. 6: General election, including presidential, senate and congressional races

Qualifying fees for 2012 Liberty County general elections
• Probate Court judge: $1,894.94
• Superior Court clerk: $1,894.94
• Sheriff: $2,270.25
• Tax commissioner: $1,894.94
• Chief Magistrate: $1,894.94
• Coroner: $72
• State Court solicitor: $1,560
• State Court judge: $1,560
• Board of Commissioners: $54
• Liberty County chairman: $72
• Liberty County Board of Education: $180
*BoC districts 4, 5 and 6 and BoE districts 1, 2 and 3 are up for election.

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