Filing period ends today

Published 9:21 pm Tuesday, February 28, 2012

One more candidate has joined the race for the Beaufort County Board of Commissioners, and an incumbent school-board member is seeking re-election to that board in the waning days of the filing period that end today.

Lloyd Ballance of Belhaven is the fifth Democrat to file for election to the commissioners board. Barbara Boyd-Williams, also of Belhaven, wants to keep her seat on the Beaufort County Board of Education.

Those candidates who want to run for election this year in a variety of federal, state or local races in 2012 must file to do so by noon today.

All seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and the N.C. General Assembly are up for grabs this year, along with the county’s register of deeds, four seats on the Beaufort County Board of Commissioners, five seats on the Beaufort County Board of Education and one seat on the Beaufort County Soil and Water Conservation Board.

Beaufort County voters will help choose representatives from two congressional districts, one state senator, and two members of the N.C. House of Representatives in party primaries May 8.

As of Tuesday morning, incumbent U.S. Rep. G.K. Butterfield of Wilson, a Democrat, was the sole candidate in the 1st Congressional District race. In the 3rd Congressional District, incumbent Walter B. Jones, a Republican from Farmville, faces a challenge from Frank Palombo of New Bern in the Republican primary. Erik Anderson of Winterville is running unopposed for the Democratic nomination in the 3rd District.

In the 1st District race for the N.C. Senate, incumbent Stan White of Nags Head was unopposed for the Democratic Party’s nomination while two Beaufort County Republicans, Jerry Evans and Bill Cook, were vying for the Republican nomination in that race.

The 1st District includes all or parts of Beaufort, Camden, Chowan, Currituck, Dare, Gates, Hyde, Pasquotank and Perquimans counties.

Some Beaufort County voters will be casting ballots in the race to represent the 3rd District in the N.C. House of Representatives. In that race to date, incumbent Beaufort County Commissioner Robert Cayton of Aurora is the sole candidate for the Democratic nomination. In November, he will face the winner of the Republican primary that includes candidates Wayne Langston of Chocowinity and Michael Speciale of New Bern.

In the local register of deeds race, incumbent Jennifer Leggett Whitehurst, a Republican, will run unopposed.

In the primary, voters will choose four Democrats and four Republicans to battle in the Nov. 6 general election, with the top four vote-getters being elected.

Also as of Tuesday morning, 12 candidates — five Democrats and seven Republicans — had filed for election to the county board. In addition to Ballance, the Democratic candidates include Robert Belcher, Mickey Cochran, Carolyn W. Harding and incumbent Jerry E. Langley, who currently serves as chairman of the board. The Republican candidates include incumbents Jay McRoy and Hood Richardson and challengers Gary Brinn, Larry Britt, Donald Dixon, Rick Gagliano and Tony “T.J.” Keech Jr.

Five seats are up for election this year on the local school board.

Incumbents Eltha Booth, who represents District 1; Mike Isbell, who represents District 9, and Barbara Boyd-Williams, who represents District 3, did not have opposition as of Tuesday morning. In District 5, incumbent F. Mac Hodges faces a challenge from Proctor Kidwell and David Daniel. In District 7, Bill Sprenkle and Carolyn Walter have filed to fill the seat currently held by Belcher who is running for county commissioner.

The school board races are nonpartisan and will not be on the ballot until November.

The voter registration deadline for the May 8 primary election is April 13, although individuals who miss this deadline may register in person and then vote at one-stop voting sites in the person’s county of residence during the one-stop voting period.

The last day for voters to change party affiliation before the May 8 primary is April 13.

One-stop voting for the primary election begins April 19 and ends May 5.