Voters to decide several positions in primary election - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Voters to decide several positions in primary election

Claudia Collier Claudia Collier

The primary election is almost here, and come May 20, Effingham County voters will have a variety of positions and questions to weigh in on.

On the Republican side, voters will select a county commissioner for districts two, three and five.

There is also an open Board of Education seat for district four, while the Republicans decided to not pose any questions for voters on this year's ballet. Democratic voters will weigh in on 6.

Some of the more bipartisan questions pertain to library funding, asking voters if they agree that the county should improve funding of libraries, so the operating hours can be expanded.

Also, focusing on education, is a question asking if the constitution be amended to make the education budget Georgia's first priority.

"So many people are concerned it isn't a partisan issue, the money that goes into it, how it is being used," said Effingham County Democratic Party Committee Secretary Claudia Collier. "It is something in the Governor's race he has been compelled to address strongly because he has a Democratic contender."

One other question focuses on whether residents should be allowed to purchase electricity from a competing energy provider. Right now they are not allowed to rent solar equipment.

There are also a couple of questions relating to the current commission chair position that people will see on the Democratic  ballot on May 20.

The ballot states, "Do you agree out commission chair should be given the right to vote at all times?" and "Should the county commission chair be eliminated altogether?"  

Democratic leaders said this is an issue they want the public's opinion on.

"We have five district commission chair positions," said Collier. "A few years ago they put in a sixth person in on the commission, and he is the chair and he is an elected position, but that person does not get to vote unless there is a tie. The only reason there would be a tie with remaining commissioner is if one person has to recuse themselves. So questions on the ballot, for us, is a way to educate voters too, or make them question something."

There is also a question concerning whether an elected official with outstanding ethics fines should re-run. That question is in relation to current situation involving an Effingham County commissioner who is currently being questioned on ethics issues.

Voting yes or no on these questions may or may not result in changed within the local government, but it's more of a way to assess public opinion.

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