It's Wednesday June 19, 2013
News From The Village Updated Almost Daily
May 2, 2012
Voters who don’t want to to wait until Tuesday, May 8 have been voting early at the Pamlico County Courthouse. A week before Election Day, more than 300 have cast ballots in the early voting period that started on April 19 and runs through Saturday, May 5. That’s about 3 percent of the 9370 registered voters.Primaries, Local Races, Local Issue On TapIn addition to primaries for a number of fall races, the vote counting on May 8 will decide some non-partisan school board races in the Oriental area. The voting underway now will also winnow the field for a local judicial race and voters here will be part of the statewide vote on whether the NC constitution should be amended to define and restrict marriage.
In Pamlico County this season, the races for State House and State Senate may be getting more attention than usual; the recent fight over ferry tolls and inaction by local legislators to prevent the tolls last year could be a factor for voters here.Three Parties PrimariesIn addition to those State House and State Senate primaries, voters in other GOP primaries will determine candidates in the Presidential, Governor, Lt. Governor, and state cabinet races including Treasurer, Auditor, Public Instruction, Agriculture, Insurance and Secretary of State. Republican Congressman Walter Jones is facing a primary challenge from former New Bern Police Chief Frank Palombo to represent NC District 3 in the US House of Representatives.
Meanwhile, voters in the Democratic primary will be picking candidates for Governor, Lt. Governor, State Treasurer, Agriculture and Labor Commissioners, and in one district of Pamlico County, a county commissioner.
Libertarians are on the primary ballot, too. They’re choosing a presidential candidate. (Ron Paul is on the GOP ballot.)Primaries Open To Others In Open Primary NCPamlico elections director Lisa Bennett notes that in an open-primary state such as NC, an unaffiliated voter may choose to take part in one of the party’s primaries. They do not need to become a member of that party. Registered Democrats may vote only in the Democratic primaries, Republicans only in the GOP primaries, and Libertarians only in their party’s primary.Candidates in Several Local RacesHere’s the rundown of the more local races that area voters will see on their ballots:State House, District 3, Republican Primary.District 3 includes Pamlico, Craven and Beaufort Counties. The District 3 House seat is the one to which Norman Sanderson of Arapahoe was elected in 2010. This year, Sanderson decided to run for the NC Senate, leaving the seat vacant. Three Republicans are in this primary, which will determine who will run in November against Democrat Bob Cayton, a Beaufort County Commissioner who lives in Aurora.
Voters choosing to take part in the GOP primary may choose one of the following three Republican candidates in the State House contest:.
Wayne Langston – a Chocowinity resident and co-owner of R&L Investment Homes, LLC, Pit & Pump Inc and Scott & Franklin, Inc. His website says he would work for Voter ID, and reduced government, reduced taxes, reduced regulations and reduced unemployment.
Michael Speciale – New Bern resident, retired from the Marines. He has run for the state legislature before. His website says he is a “Christian, a conservative and a patriot.”
Clayton Tripp – Vanceboro resident – His website says he “likes to consider the pros and cons of each issue and will not vote any way that isn’t beneficial to my constituents” and that if elected, he promises “not to vote straight party lines.”State Senate, District 2, Republican Primary.This Senate District straddles both sides of the lower Neuse River and the Senator from the 2nd District would represent Pamlico, Carteret and Craven Counties This is the seat that Jean Preston is vacating, having decided not to seek re-election.
The GOP Primary Candidates for State Senator are:
Ken Jones – Mayor of Pine Knoll Shores, now in his second term. Jones has worked as a financial planner for 15 years after retiring from the Air Force as a Captain.
Randy Ramsey – Owner, Jarrett Bay Boatworks, Beaufort which he founded a quarter century ago. Ramsey’s website speaks of “lower taxes and less government red tape” to create jobs.
Norman Sanderson – First term State House Representative from Arapahoe and day care center owner in Havelock. Sanderson’s website says that in that term he “fought each day to uphold sound conservative principles” and was “always mindful that I was elected to represent the citizens, not special interests.”
Sanderson has faced scrutiny in recent months among some constituents in Pamlico County because he voted for the ferry toll in the state budget last year.Pamlico County Commissioner, Democratic Primary.There is one primary – Democratic – for a seat on the Pamlico County Board of Commissioners. That is in District 1 – Grantsboro and points west — where two Democrats are vying for the seat. This primary will determine who gets the job, as no Republican is running in the fall. Facing off are:
Pat Prescott – Town Clerk in Grantsboro and executive director at the Pamlico Heritage Center.
Lance Hamby – Produce manager at the Food Lion in Grantsboro
There are two contested School Board Races in the Oriental area. These are non-partisan elections and any voter in the district may vote, regardless of party affiliation or lack of affiliation.Pamlico County School Board, District 2 – Non-partisan electionThis district, like Pamlico County Commission district 2 includes the Town of Oriental and points north to Florence, Whortonsville, Pamlico, River Dunes. Candidates are:
Charles “Mac” MacIntyre – Oriental resident. Until a few years ago, MacIntyre owned Mac’s Mini Mart on Broad Street and had a career running convenience stores during which he was district manager for 7-11 stores.
Mackie Spruill – Oriental resident. Spruill taught in recent years in the Pamlico County School System after retiring from a marketing and management career at Alcoa, AT&T and Microsoft.Pamlico County School Board, District 5 – Non-partisan electionThis district, which parallels the County Commission District 5,takes in Pamlico County’s southern coast: from the west side of the Oriental Bridge District 5 extends through China Grove, Holt Chapel, Janeiro, Dawson’s Creek, Arapahoe, Minnesott Beach, Bairds Creek and Kennels Beach.
John McCotter – lives in Arapahoe. Incumbent school board member. In a questionnaire from the Pamlico News, McCotter cited his support for work toward student academic achievements, safer schools, anti-bullying initiatives, lower dropout rates and better school nutrition.
Kris Ward – lives outside the town of Oriental. In her Pamlico News questonnaire, Ward said she’d emphasize academic performance, and wanted an increase in course offerings to keep the dropout levels low and “improvement in all aspects of athletics; facilities, performance and direction.”NC District Court Judge, District 3B – Non-Partisan PrimaryAnother non-partisan race is for NC District Court Judge, District 3B which serves Craven, Carteret and Pamlico Counties. The top two vote getters would face off in November. Voters may choose one candidate in this primary. It’s a four year term.
In the running are:
W. David McFadyen III – Partner at Valentine and McFadyen, P.C.
Kirby Smith – Appointed Judge for District 3B in March upon the retirement of Judge Jerry Waddell. Before that, he’d been a partner at McCotter, Ashton & SmithBernard (Bernie) Bush – Attorney for the Craven County Dept of Social Services
As mentioned above, these races are non-partisan — on the ballot, at least. Unofficially, political parties are supporting particular candidates. On the Pamlico GOP website for instance, McFadyen’s name, like that of all the GOP candidates in other races, is written in red, the color associated with the GOP, while Kirby and Bush’s names are in blue, the color associated with Democrats.Proposed Amendment To The NC ConstitutionFinally, there is a referendum on the ballot on May 8. In this election — and not in November — voters will decide whether to approve the proposed amendment on marriage. It has been called the marriage amendment or Amendment One, though it is the only one on the ballot. It reads:Constitutional amendment to provide that marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this State.
On the ballot voters may vote For or Against.
Drafters of the proposed amendment had targeted gay marriage, which is already not permitted by state law. As written, the proposed amendment could affect not only gay couples but straight couples who are not married. Such families and their children who may now receive domestic benefits from employers may find them in jeopardy if the amendment passes. There’s also been a question, as was the case in Ohio, of whether some domestic violence prosecutions and protections would proceed if gay couples and unmarried heterosexual couples are not recognized by the state.
Early voting is happening through Saturday, May 5. Hours are weekdays from 8a-5p and Saturday 8a-1p at the Board of Elections offices at the County Courthouse. On May 8, Primary Election Day, the 10 precincts across Pamlico County will be open from 6:30a-7:30p.
Also, residents who were not registered to vote by the early April deadline may not vote on May 8. However, if they go to the Board of Election during the early voting period and seek out the “one-stop-voting” they will be able to register and vote at the same time.