The Long County Board of Elections Friday rejected challenges to three candidates’ qualifications. The action followed a Wednesday hearing.
Board of Elections Chairwoman Vanessa Cunningham, said the board ruled that Jeffery Arnold, Craig Nobles and Deona Carter are qualified.
Jacqueline Danielle Youmans had claimed Arnold had not lived in the county for the required two years. He is a candidate for state court judge. He was appointed to the job in 2010. Youmans did not appear at the hearing and according to testimony provided by Lynsey Gaskin the challenger doesn’t live in the county now. Arnold also provide documents showing he has been in the county for more than two years. He is unopposed in the election.
Incumbent Sheriff Craig Nobles also was challenged on residency, by sheriff candidate Darrell Ballance, who was at the hearing, but did not testify. His challenge was based on Nobles having a homestead exemption in Tattnall County, and not meeting the two-year requirement.
Several witnesses for Nobles said they were his neighbors and had been for more than two years. The sheriff also produced documents verifying his residency. An affidavit from Sandra Spikes, an employee in the Tattnall County tax commissioner’s office, said Nobles’ homestead exemption had not been removed until January because of a mistake.
There are four candidates for sheriff, Nobles, Balance, Frank McClelland Jr. and James Rogers.
Carter was challenged by Brooke Manning, who told the board that Carter shouldn’t be able to seek office because she had pending charges against her for an alleged 2009 confrontation with her brother Alec Manning. Brooke Manning presented a Long County Sheriff’s Office report of the incident.
The board ruled Carter was qualified because there was “no evidence of conviction of Carter of a crime as it relates to the alleged incident.”
Carter and incumbent Tax Commissioner Becky Fowler are seeking that office.