Hamlet, Ellerbe, Hoffman council races see challengers; Rockingham, Dobbins Heights uncontested

By: Staff report

ROCKINGHAM — With 10 minutes to spare before filing closed at noon Friday, Daniel Kelly walked into the Richmond County Board of Elections office to fill out his paperwork to run for re-election on the Hoffman Town Council.

With Hoffman’s election schedule, all council seats and that of mayor are up for grabs every two years.

Rory Kevin Jones filled out his paperwork at the Richmond County Board of Elections on Wednesday.

Mayor Tommy Hart and councilwoman Cynthia Northcutt both filed on Monday, and councilman Riccardo Anderson filed last Friday.

Newcomer John D. Taylor filled out his paperwork on Thursday.

Althea Sloan Cobb never made it the office during the two-week filing period.

The past two elections, there has been at least one Hoffman to candidate not make the filing deadline. In 2015, it was Cobb. Two years before that, the elections director said the final member was decided by write-in.

Elections Director Connie Kelly said the councilman was one of two to enter races for the upcoming municipal races across the county.

The other was Jerry Lamont, who filed to run for Hamlet City Council, heating up that race with two incumbents and two challengers vying for two seats.

Current councilmen Jesse McQueen and Eddie Martin both filed on opening day, July 7. In fact, they were the first two candidates to file for any race, as they were at the office before filing began.

The other candidate in that race is Stephanie Dixon, who filed on July 11.

Another race that could have interesting results is that for Ellerbe Town Council.

The three Ellerbe incumbent commissioners up for re-election — Corey Brewington, Archie Robinson and Jean Fletcher — filed, as did Mayor Lee Berry. Brewington was elected four years ago and resigned earlier this year when he moved out of town — but was recently appointed back to his vacant seat when he moved back, Kelly said.

There are also two challengers in that race: Fred Cloninger, who filed opening day; and Lee Freeman, who filed Thursday.

Freeman ran for a seat in 2015, along with his wife, Elsie Freeman. She was elected that year — along with Jeremy McKenzie — and currently sits on the council.

In Rockingham’s uncontested race, there are three council seats — one two-year and two four-year — and council members Gene Willard, Anne Edwards and Denise Sullivan all filed on opening day.

Rockingham Mayor Steve Morris and Hamlet Mayor Bill Bayless, also up for re-election, are not being challenged.

There are also no challengers in the race for Dobbins Heights council. Council members Angeline David and Tyre Holloway both filed the first day.


Staff report