Friday, September 21, 2012
Twenty-one local candidates who will be on the ballot in November spent time talking about the issues during the annual Boil & Stump held Monday.
And, in some cases, things got contentious between the opponents.
One of the heated races this year is the battle for sheriff between incumbent Republican Lane Cribb and newcomer petition candidate Darryel Carr, who spent 10 years as a member of the Georgetown County Sheriff’s Office.
Carr said, if elected, he will form a new partnership with the residents of the county.
“I will work to prevent crime and improve the quality of life. I have a strong faith and belief in public safety and a passion for law enforcement.”
Cribb told the audience under his leadership the department has saved taxpayers about $1 million each year for the past eight years.
He also said the crime rate is down and his department has one of the highest crime clearance rates in the state.
Cribb then talked about Carr’s campaign website which, he said, appeared to be copied nearly word for word from a website created for Bill Bubrig, who was a candidate for sheriff in Plaquemines Parish, La., last year.
Under a heading “My Promise to You is,” there are seven subheads with other details. Except for location names, most of the wording is identical. Bubrig lost his bid for sheriff last year.
The Bubrig website has now been removed because it has expired, according to GoDaddy.com.
“He said his website guy did that,” Cribb said at the political gathering. “I will be the one to tell my web guy where I stand.”
On Tuesday, Carr said he was still waiting to talk with his Information Technology representative to find out how the information ended up on his website.
“He has not called me back yet. I am waiting to hear from him,” Carr said, adding he gave the IT person information about himself and his platform before the site was created.
County Council 5
There are three candidates for Georgetown County Council District 5. Two — incumbent Republican Austin Beard and Petition candidate Bubba Grimes — were on hand Monday. Ben Dunn did not attend.
Grimes said he is running because he feels council must stop finding ways to create new taxes and fees.
He said council needs to help create jobs but the fees and taxes discourage business owners from locating here.
“The population is decreasing while government is growing. Council is not doing their job. They have shirked their duties. They have let the [county] administrator evolve into a dictator,” he said.
Grimes then zeroed in on the incumbent by saying Beard “is a proven liberal” who supports higher taxes and larger government.
Beard fired back when he took to the podium.
“You have been given incorrect information,” Beard said, adding the county has the sixth-lowest tax rate in the state.
“It has been tough but we do not spend money we do not have. And we are working to try to bring jobs.”
He said if the Port of Georgetown is dredged it will have a trickle-down effect that will create jobs.
Clerk of court
Tammie Avant, a petition candidate for clerk of court, said she is running because the office can be operated in a more efficient manner.
Avant has worked as a paralegal and as a title searcher for the past 26 years.
“I know how important it is for the records in the clerk of court’s office to be accurate. I will introduce a training program for clerk of court employees,” Avant said. “I will improve the relationship with the legal community and with the public.”
Alma White, the Democrat incumbent, said she is proud of the accomplishments under her leadership which includes the building of the new Judicial Center.
She said her office is “one of the leading clerk of court’s offices in South Carolina.”
White said if anyone wants to know if she is doing a good job, they need to speak with the attorneys who use her services.
“If they use the system, they will tell you how much better things are,” White said.
S.C. House Seat 103
Petition candidate Tom Winslow is hoping to unseat Democrat Carl Anderson who has held the House 103 seat for nearly eight years.
Winslow told the crowd the port still has not been dredged and “Carl Anderson has been in office for six years.”
He said there are still people without water and sewer service and “Carl Anderson has been in office for six years.”
“What is better today than six years ago?” Winslow asked, adding the net annual income in Georgetown County is about $18,000.
Anderson said the port dredging will begin within the next 18 months.
Speaking in the third person, he said “Carl Anderson was part of the team that has made things happen along the coast.”
He said the county has been used as a model for the First Steps program.
“That was Carl Anderson who supported First Steps. When the steel mill was closed, we met in Chicago and the mill is now open,” Anderson said.
All three candidates who are running for the auditor’s position spoke at the rally.
Kathy Harrelson works in the office with Auditor Linda Mock who is not seeking another term.
Before speaking, Harrelson began with a prayer.
She said she has “worked hard with a wonderful group of Christian women” to prepare fair and accurate tax notices.
She said there has been a lot of streamlining many of the tasks in the office.
“We have raised the bar high and it will be raised even higher,” said Harrelson, on the ballot as a petition candidate.
Brian Shult, a Republican, grew up in Texas and is an Army veteran.
He said the auditor’s office “needs new blood and new ideas.”
Shult said “a fresh look at things” is always good.
“I will continue Linda’s good customer service,” he said.
Stalvey, owner of WGTN and WLMC radio stations in Georgetown, said even though he is on the ballot as a petition candidate, he is a Republican.
He said he is running because he is “mad” since his tax bill for his home continues to increase although the value of homes has dropped due to the economy.
“I want to make the auditor’s office fair and responsible,” he said.
The only contested race for the Georgetown County School Board is for the District 6 seat. The candidates are newcomers Richard Kerr and Peggy Wheeler-Cribb.
Cribb spoke mostly about the prayer issue which is detailed in a separate story in today’s Georgetown Times.
Kerr, a businessman who moved to the Waccamaw Neck from Texas eight years ago, has been involved in schools since relocating.
He said he is an avid supporter of making the pre-kindergarten programs stronger in the district.
He also would like to see job training in the county’s high schools improved.
The other school board candidates who have no opposition but spoke are incumbent Zelma Carr from District 4, Sandra Johnson from District 3 and Sarah Elliott from District 1.
Democrat Gloria Tinubu, seeking the new 7th District Congressional seat, spoke saying she will work hard to help restore the American dream to residents in South Carolina.
Her Republican challenger, Tom Rice, was campaigning elsewhere in the state but sent a representative to speak on his behalf.
Coroner Kenny Johnson, County Councilman Ron Charlton, County Councilwoman Lillie Jean Johnson, House Seat 108 candidate Stephen Goldfinch also spoke but they have no opposition.
By Scott Harper