Local residents will have to wait a while longer to find out who will be Mount Gilead’s new mayor.
Yesterday in Raleigh, the North Carolina State Board of Elections reviewed Mount Gilead’s voter protests, but they have delayed action until two new board members can be seated. The reason for the delay is the assumption that the board will order a new election for the office of mayor, but the board currently has two vacancies that prevent that for now.
State Board of Elections Chair Larry Leake said, “It appears to this member, as it did to the Montgomery Board (of Elections), that there should be a new election; however, I am short of a member to get us there.”
Speaking on behalf of protestors from the family of Dorseph Lilly, Jr., Leon Turner inquired as to whether the votes intended by the Lillys could simply be added to the Nov. 8 totals.
Leake replied, “You know, we can’t assume how people would vote. There may be someone who was denied the vote that we don’t know about, given the dynamics of this, so I don’t think we have any choice but to have the new election. Unfortunately, though, we have to get some additional (board) members before we formally can cause that to happen.”
The State Board of Elections expects to seat new members soon and will convene another meeting once that has happened. Chairman Leake said that meeting may be conducted by conference call. WMTG will continue to follow the story, and we’ll let you know whenever there are developments. Meanwhile, the state board did dismiss protests regarding the race for town commissioner, clearing the way for those vote totals to be certified and for Paula Covington and Vera Richardson to be sworn in and to begin their terms.