TOP STORY >>Tuesday is D-Day as votes are cast
By JOHN HOFHEIMER
Leader staff writer
Long lines formed all day Friday as people took advantage of the final days of early voting in the area.
Lonoke County Clerk Prudie Percifull said 2,950 people had voted in the county by Friday afternoon, including 1,800 at the old Community Bank in Cabot.
In Jacksonville, 2,159 residents had cast early votes at city hall, and 2,726 had cast votes at Sherwood’s senior center.
Early voting continues Saturday in Jacksonville and Cabot and at the courthouses, but on Monday, the only place to cast votes will be at the county courthouses.
In addition to the Republican incumbents facing challenges in two countywide law-enforcement races in Lonoke County and the contest for the county clerk’s office, being vacated by Percifull, voters will help decide statewide offices and two ballot initiatives.
Former deputy prosecutor Tim Blair, a Democrat, is challenging Prosecutor Lona McCastlain, a Republican.
Democrat Charlie Martin, the former sheriff, is challenging Sheriff Jim Roberson, a Republican.Republican Cassandra Pitts, who works in Roberson’s sheriff’s office, faces off against Dawn Porterfield, who works in Percifull’s office.
In the only other contested countywide election, Republican incumbent surveyor Samuel E. Smith is de-fending his seat against Democrat William “Randy” Gipson.
Running unopposed for countywide office are County Judge Charlie Troutman, Circuit Clerk Deborah Oglesby, Assessor Jerry D. Adams, Treasurer Karol DePriest and Coroner Sherry Stracener—all incumbents and Democrats, and Democrat Patricia McCallie, for collector.
Democrat Larry Ridgeway will try to regain his old Lonoke County Quorum Court seat from Republican J.P. Jannette Minton.
Alexis Malham, a Republican, defends her District 6 J.P. seat from Democrat Chris R. Skinner and from Harry Roderick, an independent.
In the Dist. 12 race, Republican Casey VanBuskirk faces Patty Knox, a Democrat.
All other Lonoke County Quorum Courts seats are unopposed.
Alderman Wayne McGee is unopposed for Lonoke mayor.
On the city council, incumbent Democrat Phillip Howell faces independent challenger Shane Whitehurst.
Robert (Bob) Combs-R, Wendell Walker-I and Kenneth Pasley-R, will face off in the only other contested city council race.
All other city races are unopposed.
Republican Eddie Joe Wil-liams, independents James R. Glenn, David Polantz and Kenny Ridgeway square off in a four-way race to replace Mayor Stubby Stumbaugh.
Independent Clinton D. McGue and Republican Jimmy Taylor are vying for city attorney.
In the races for alderman, here’s who is running:
Ward 1, Position 1, John W. Johnson and Eddie Long, both independents.
Ward 2, Position 1, Michael A. Burton, an independent, and Republican Virgil O. Teague, Jr.
Ward 3, Position 1, incumbent Tom Armstrong is challenged by Bruce L. “Ernie” Ernst. Both men are independents.
Ward 3, Position 2, independent Nancy Cohea is running against Teri Miessner, a Republican.
Ward 4, Position 1, incumbent Odis Waymack faces Becky Lemaster. Both are independents.
Ward 2, Position 2, Robert L. Helton, Lisa Brickell and Thomas Standley face off in a three-way race. All are independents.
In Austin’s nonpartisan elections, incumbent Mayor Bernie Chamberlain faces Barry D. Weathers II and Jeremy C. Reed.
For Austin City Council, in Ward 2, Position 2, Christopher L. Dawson faces Michawn David and in Ward 2, Position 5, Tammy Williams faces Sandra Kay Chambers.
In Ward, Mayor Art Brooke faces challenges from Bill Boyd, former Alderman Donnie Rouse, and J.S. “Buford” McClendon.
In contested city council races, incumbent Ginger Tarno faces Don Harris, Marrice Jackson faces John B. Harris and Murriel Seymour challenges Jeff Shaver.
In a three-way race for mayor, independents Ron (Yank) Wannemacker, Harold D. Reed and Ray Glover seek the seat vacated by Bob McCallie.
Curtis Moody faces Leo Orton for Ward 1, Position 2.
Mayor Harold “Bill” Morris faces a challenge from Roger Oliver.
In Pulaski County 29,005 took advantage of early voting.
“It’s going really smoothly. Attendance has been steady and Friday was the first day we had lines,” said Pat O’Brien, Pulaski County Circuit Clerk.
“We’ve had a few small glitches, normal stuff like people with incorrect addresses,” O’Brien said.
In North Pulaski County, voters are chosing between County Judge Buddy Villines, a Democrat, is seeking his ninth term, or challenger Buddy York, a Repub-lican, a North Little Rock bail bondsman. Democrat Doc Holladay and DeWayne Graham, a Republican, face off in a contest to replace Sheriff Randy Johnson, who is retiring.
Alderman Dan Stedman is running against Mike Presson, a restaurant owner, to succeed Mayor Bill Harmon.
City Clerk/Treasurer Virginia Hillman, faces a challenge from Sharon McMinn.
In Ward I, position 1, firefighter Robert Wallace challenges incumbent Becky Vassar. Greg Chastain and Charlie Harmon seek the Ward I, position 2 alderman seat.
There are no contested Jack-sonville city races.
In White County 4,957 cast ballots during early voting so far. There is a three-way battle for Lonoke County judge between independent candidate Dennis Gillam, Democrat Waylon Heath-scott and Republican Michael Lincoln.
White County Sheriff Pat Garrett, a Democrat, faces challengers Republican Ricky Shourd and independent candidate Edward Thornton.
The only other contested county race is for tax assessor between incumbent Debra Akers Lang-D and her Republican challenger Shane Sellers.
Incumbents running unopposed are Circuit Clerk Tami King, County Clerk Tanya Burleson, County Treasurer Janet Hibbitts and Coroner David Powell — all Republicans along with Democrat Sue Liles for collector.
Contested races for White County Quorum Court are Horace Taylor-D and Jerry Sites-R for District 1; incumbent Terry Adams-D and challenger Billy Young-R for District 4; incumbent Johney Gibson-D and challenger Danny Thomas-R for District 6, and incumbent Mike Cleveland-R and Jimmy Dale Smith, an independent for District 9.
The rest of the quorum court positions are uncontested.
Beebe voters will decide whether or not to double the size of the city through annexation.
Like most city elections, Beebe’s are nonpartisan.
Mike Robertson is running unopposed for mayor, replacing Donald Ward. Carol Crump-Westergren and Estela Gomez are competing for City Clerk/ Treasurer and three are running for the Ward 3, Position 1 alderman spot on the city council.
The candidates are John D. Johnson, Hermon Blackmon and Garland Kirkpatrick.
Uncontested races for Beebe include Harold Welch, Ward 1, Position 1; Janice Petray, Ward 1, Positon 2; Becky Sort, Ward 2, Position 1; Tracy Lightfoot, Ward 2, Position 1, and Les Cossey, Ward 3, Position2.
In McRae voters will choose between incumbent mayor Robert “Bob” Sullivan or David Newman. The only contested race for McRae city council is between independents Cecil “Mack” Davis and Shirley Cox for the Ward 1, Position 2 seat.
Other city council members are running unopposed.
In Searcy, there is a three-way race for mayor between incumbent Belinda LaForce-D; former alderman Dale Brewer-R and Phillip R. Williams, an independent candidate.
City Clerk and Treasurer Tommy Gowen-D, and incumbent City Attorney Buck C. Gibson-D, are running uncontested. There are races for three seats on the Searcy City Council.
JoAnn Ramsey-D, and Mike Chalenburg-R, are vying for the Ward 4, Position 2, alderman seat. Ward 3, Position 1, incumbent Dale English-D, is facing off against challenger Cindy Erwin-Barker-R, and incumbent Jackie Liles-R, is running against Dale Ellis-D.
The rest of the city council members are running without opposition.