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home : news : e-news May 25, 2019

6/27/2017 12:17:00 PM
NC General Assembly Approves Change In Lincolnton Elections
Lincoln Herald File Photo
Lincoln Herald File Photo

Wayne Howard
Staff Writer

The decision on whether all North Carolina municipal elections will be moved to even-numbered years is still to be made, but Lincolnton's city elections will be moving to even-numbered years starting next year.

The NC Senate gave final approval to House Bill 504, introduced by Representative Jason Saine, on Tuesday (June 27th). That means City Council members Dr. Martin Eaddy and Tim Smith won't stand for re-election this year. Their terms will be extended until next year. David Black, who would have been subject to a special election this year under the old rules, will now have his term extended until 2020. That's also when Roby Jetton will be subject to re-election.  

Another big change will be that when Lincolnton elects its mayor next year, it will be for a four-year term. Mayor Ed Hatley's current term will be extended until next year.

There's also a move in the General Assembly that would make all those local elections partisan. Currently, Lincolnton is one of only six North Carolina municipalities who have partisan elections. That proposal would also make school board races partisan.  

The Lincolnton City Council endorsed Saine's House Bill 504, and decided not to join other members of the NC League of Municipalities in opposing Senate Bill 64--the one that would move all municipal elections to even-numbered years.

At one time, there was also the prospect that North Carolina might be forced to have a special election this year for other offices based on a court decision that there had been political and racially biased gerrymandering in setting Congressional districts, but that possibility has been dismissed. The General Assembly will have to redraw some districts prior to next year's election, but there will be no special election this year.

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