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Voters to decide leadership, tax issue

Thomson voters will choose the city's leadership and all McDuffie County voters will rule on a continued one-cent education sales tax. Election day is Nov. 8.

Kelvin Williams, the director of the McDuffie County Board of Elections and Voter Registration, said voters who take part in advance voting can enter their ballots at one location. Thomson voters who wait until Nov. 8 will have to cast their city ballot in one location and their county ballot in another.

Advance voting hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday at the McDuffie County Voter Registration Office, 808 White Oak Road in Thomson. Advance voting began Oct. 18 and continues through Nov. 4.

Voters may direct any procedural questions to Williams' office by calling (706) 595-2105.

Candidates and issues will be discussed at a public forum at 7 p.m. Tuesday at The Thomson Depot. Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. Thomson Alumnae Chapter is sponsoring the event, in cooperation with McDuffie County news media.

WTHO newswoman Donna Stillinger is gathering questions from the public in advance of the forum. Questions may be submitted to, WTHO 788 Cedar Rock Road, Thomson, GA 30824.

The forum will introduce Thomson Mayor Kenneth Usry and challenger Delmar "Brink" Bradshaw, and City Councilman John Smalley and challenger James Taylor Jr.

The four other Thomson City Council members are running unopposed.

McDuffie County Schools Superintendent Jim LeBrun will discuss the Education Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax, which would continue the one-cent sales tax for education projects through 2017. If the measure is approved, school officials could sell bonds on anticipated revenue to begin projects. School officials have listed a new Norris Elementary School and completion of renovations at The Brickyard at Thomson High as being among the priorities.

Stillinger said the joint forums are a tradition in McDuffie County, and are a good way for voters to see and hear the candidates.

Williams said the city of Thomson has 4,092 registered voters, both active and inactive. He said 214 had voted in person as of Tuesday morning.

McDuffie County has 13,801 registered voters, and 286 had voted in person as of Tuesday.

Web posted on Thursday, October 27, 2011

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