New municipal officials elected in Duplin
By Steve Herring
Published in News on November 4, 2009 1:46 PM
The voter turnout in Duplin County municipal elections was slightly less than 21 percent with write-in candidates winning in Calypso and Warsaw.
The totals are unofficial until the canvass is held Nov. 10 at 11 a.m. It will be later today before the write-in names will be available.
Faison Mayor Elmer Flake who handily won re-election to his third two-year term was in the office as usual this morning. He will be working with three new board members.
"I came in, put on a pot of coffee and got ready to go," he said.
Flake had had 91 votes (48.66 percent) to turn back challenger David Millard III who had 25 (13.37 percent). Write-in candidates accounted for 71 votes or 37.97 percent of the total.
While the countywide total was low, the number of Faison voters had doubled over the election two years ago, from 97 to 190.
"I was surprised, but glad to see that more people are involved," Flake said.
Newcomer William "Billy" Ward II led the six-candidate field for the three seats on the board with 135 votes. Pat Vinson was second with 125 votes, and Ricky Ramirez was third with 116 votes.
Commissioner Carolyn Tucker Kenyon finished fourth with 77 votes followed by incumbent Commissioner Lisa Patterson, 36 votes and Angela Faison, 32 votes. There were two write-in votes.
Commissioners serve staggered four-year terms.
Flake said he thinks the vote reflects that people think he is doing a good job.
"We have a lot of projects in the works that we want to see completed and grants," he said. "There are three new commissioners coming on so we will see where we go from that. I am looking forward to working with them and moving ahead."
Calypso's mayoral election garnered 21 write-in votes.
Voters also selected five board members. JoAnne B. Wilson led with 32 votes, followed by Larry Cashwell with 31, Rubylene Lambert with 30, Diana Lewis with 29 and write-ins with 25.
The mayor and commissioners serve two-year terms.
Warsaw Mayor Win Batten was returned to office for a four-year term gathering 248 votes (92.88 percent). There were 19 write-in votes (17.12 percent).
Voters also selected two board members from a field of four.
The top two vote-getters were A.J. "Johnny" Jenkins with 172 and Johnny Hollingsworth with 170. Angela B. Mainor had 159 votes, while and Marvin L. Coe had 140 votes.
Al Searles had 191 votes (93.63 percent) to win an unexpired term that ends in 2011. There were 13 write-in votes.
Board members serve staggered four-year terms.