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Georgetown City Council ponders non-partisan elections

  • Friday, January 24, 2014

Georgetown City Council is holding a Capital Improvements planning retreat and the first topic discussed was not about capital improvements.

The transition to non-partisan elections was a topic new Council member Carol Jayroe asked to have on the agenda.

She passed out information stating Georgetown is one of only five of the state’s 270 municipalities that still have partisan elections. Jayroe said partisan elections leads to confusion because many people feel the June primaries are the only elections.

“We had so many Democrat and Republican issues during the election,” Jayroe said. “One of my goals is to bring everyone in the city together.”

Councilman Brendon Barber said he feels people need to know the platform of the candidates which can be done when they run under a party flag.

Councilman Rudolph Bradley said “the elements that need to exist to justify non-partisan elections are not here.” He said until those elements are in place he cannot support non-partisan elections.

“I don’t see Georgetown ever supporting that change,” Bradley said.

Council member Peggy Wayne said she feels non-partisan elections are needed but she got a different feeling from some at a Georgetown County Democratic Party meeting this week.

“I asked at the meeting what they thought about it. And, I hate to say it, but it turned into a black-white issue. Then they said if we make that change we would then want different precincts,” Wayne said. “We turn a lot of good people away from running because they do not want to deal with primaries.”

It was decided to have a political consultant make a presentation at a workshop in February. Read more in Wednesday’s Georgetown Times.

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