Elections ahead

BOC was slated to approve qualifying fees last night

Qualifying fees were slated to be set Tuesday night for what looks to be a busy election year.

Pierce County voters will select their representatives for several local, state and national offices this year.

Commissioners were to set qualifying fees for both partisan and non-partisan posts at their regular meeting Tuesday night (after The Times’ deadline).

Partisan offices up for election and their qualifying fees include sheriff ($1,616.40), clerk of court and tax commissioner ($1,392.25), county commissioners district one and three ($187.56), coroner ($329.25) and surveyor ($21).

The sheriff’s race will be the most high profile position on the ballot and, so far, has generated the most interest and the most candidates.

Incumbent Sheriff Ramsey Bennett will be seeking his third term. Major Robby Boatright of the Blackshear Police Department, retired DNR Ranger Gary Simmons and retired GSP trooper Greg Stone have all announced their candidacies to challenge Bennett.

Clerk of Court Thomas Sauls and Tax Commissioner Terresa Davis have both said they will run for re-election. Sauls will be seeking his sixth term in office, while Davis will be running for a third term.

District three commissioner Randy Dixon has said he will seek another term. Dixon has served for 14 years. He was first elected in a special election in 2006 and has won re-election three times. District one commissioner Harold Rozier Jr. says he has not yet made a decision about running for relection. Rozier is completing his second term in office.

Coroner William Wilson and Surveyor Stephen Duncan have both said they will seek re-election. Both will be seeking a third term in their respective positions.

Non-partisan races on the ballot include probate court and magistrate court judges and districts one and three on the school board.

Probate Judge Moye Howard and Magistrate Judge Glenda Dowling have both announced plans to seek re-election. Dowling was first elected to fill an unexpired term in 1989 and has been re-elected seven times. Howard is currently completing his second term.  District one school board member Jack Saussy could not be reached for comment. Third district BOE member Chip Griner said he will likely run again.

Qualifying fees for probate and magistrate judge are $1,392.25, and the fee for board of education posts one and three is $126.

District one includes the Hacklebarney/Cason areas, while district three includes the Otter Creek and St. Johns Blackshear areas.  

Both partisan and non-partisan qualifying will take place beginning at 9 a.m. Monday, March 2, through noon Friday, March 6.

The Democratic and Republican primaries and non-partisan election will be Tuesday, May 19. A run-off, if necessary,  will be Tuesday, July 21.

Nominees for the Republican and Democratic parties will then face off in the November general election.  

The general election will be Tuesday, November 3, with a run-off, if necessary, for state, local and federal offices will be Tuesday, January 5, 2021.

Qualifying fees are set by the state and are based on three percent of the base salary, not including longevity, and cost of living increases.