Municipal candidates have five days to file

Published 3:40 pm Sunday, July 16, 2017

With less than a week before the filing period for municipal elections in Beaufort County ends, there are no candidates for half the seats available this election cycle.

As of Friday afternoon, 15 people filed to run for the 30 seats that are available this election cycle. Two of those candidates are seeking the same seat — the mayor’s chair in Chocowinity. The filing period ends at noon Friday.

Washington Mayor Mac Hodges is seeking re-election. Gil Davis, a former council member, and William “Bill” Clark are seeking seats on the five-member City Council, where all seats are available. The mayor and council members serve two-year terms.

In Aurora, Mayor Clif Williams and Commissioner Patricia Bragg have filed for re-election. The mayor’s seat and two seats on the Aurora Board of Commissioners are available this election cycle.

Bath voters will elect two members of the four-member Board of Commissioners this year. The four-year terms of commissioners Patricia Duffer and Jay Hardin expire this year.

Yvonne DeRuiz, an incumbent of the Belhaven Board of Aldermen, is seeking re-election. In Belhaven, voters will pick a mayor and three members of the five-member Board of Aldermen this year. Mayor Adam O’Neal’s two-year term expires this fall. The seats held by DeRuiz, Greg Satterthwaite and Steve Carawan are available this election cycle. Carawan was appointed to fill the vacant seat on the board created when Dr. Charles O. Boyette died. Boyette’s term did not expire until 2019, but because Carawan was appointed to that seat and not elected, he is required to file for election if he wants to keep the seat until 2019.

Chocowinity voters will elect two members to the town’s four-member Board of Commissioners and a mayor. The four-year terms of Mayor Jimmy Mobley and commissioners Louise S. Furman and William J. Albritton expire later this year. Mobley, who is seeking re-election, faces a challenge from Commissioner Curt Jenkins, who is in the middle of his first term as a commissioner.

Pantego Mayor Stuart Ricks is seeking re-election as are Board of Commissioners members Chad Keech and Mart Benson. All seats on the five-member board are available this election cycle. The mayor and commissioners serve two-year terms.

Each seat on the five-member Washington Park Board of Commissioners and the mayor’s seat are available this election cycle. The current two-year terms of Mayor Tom Richter and board members Wade Dale, Patrick Nash, Belinda Cowell, Lee Bowen and Jeffrey A. Peacock end later this year.

Dale, Nash and Cowell have filed for re-election.

The filing period resumes Monday. Candidates may file from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. The Board of Elections conducts municipal elections for Aurora, Bath, Belhaven, Chocowinity, Pantego, Washington and Washington Park, which pay the board to conduct the elections.

About Mike Voss

Mike Voss is the contributing editor at the Washington Daily News. He has a daughter and four grandchildren. Except for nearly six years he worked at the Free Lance-Star in Fredericksburg, Va., in the early to mid-1990s, he has been at the Daily News since April 1986.
Journalism awards:
• Pulitzer Prize for Meritorious Public Service, 1990.
• Society of Professional Journalists: Sigma Delta Chi Award, Bronze Medallion.
• Associated Press Managing Editors’ Public Service Award.
• Investigative Reporters & Editors’ Award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Public Service Award, 1989.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Investigative Reporting, 1990.
All those were for the articles he and Betty Gray wrote about the city’s contaminated water system in 1989-1990.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Investigative Reporting, 1991.
• North Carolina Press Association, Third Place, General News Reporting, 2005.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Lighter Columns, 2006.
Recently learned he will receive another award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Lighter Columns, 2010.
4. Lectured at or served on seminar panels at journalism schools at UNC-Chapel Hill, University of Maryland, Columbia University, Mary Washington University and Francis Marion University.

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