Apr 292015

By Tammy Gray

Early voting in the City of Holbrook General Election is underway. The last day to request an early ballot by mail is Friday, May 8. Early ballots may be cast in person at city hall until Friday, May 15.

A single council seat will be filled in the election, which is set for Tuesday, May 19. Candidates Tim Dixon and David Newlin are vying for the final spot on the city council, which wasn’t filled during the primary election held in March.

Three positions on the city council, as well as the mayor’s seat, were up for election this cycle. Mayor Jeff Hill and Councilmen Charles Haussman and Phil Cobb decided not to seek re-election. Councilman Bobby Tyler decided to run for mayor, and was elected outright in the primary, leaving his council seat vacant.

During the primary election, C.J. Wischmann and write-in candidate Francie Payne both received enough votes to be elected outright. In order to be elected outright, the candidates needed to receive 50 percent of the votes cast plus one. Wischmann easily exceeded that total with 319 of the 534 votes cast. Payne received a total of 275 votes to be elected. The remaining candidates did not receive enough votes to be elected directly, leaving the top two vote-getters, Dixon and Newlin, to face each other in May’s general election. The outcome also eliminated write-in candidate Earl Kester Sr. from the ballot. In the primary election, Dixon, who was a write-in candidate, received 148 votes, while Newlin received 195 votes.

In addition to deciding two of the council seats, as well as electing Tyler as mayor, voters also approved a home rule provision in the primary that allows the city to set its own expenditure limit rather than being restricted to amounts set by the state. The additional expenditures will allow the city to complete road maintenance and repair work, as well as other projects such as the splash pad park and improvements to the golf course.

City Clerk Cher Reyes noted that voting for the May 19 general election will take place at city hall, which will be open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Voters will need to show identification as required by state law.

Voters may request an early ballot by visiting city hall in person at 465 First Ave. or calling 524-6225. The deadline to register to vote in the general election has already passed.