Stafford ousts Rutledge in Pontotoc mayoral contest

PONTOTOC – Incumbent Bill Rutledge lost the mayor’s seat Tuesday to Jeff Stafford, a former alderman.
Stafford polled 55 percent of the vote in the Democratic primary to defeat Rutledge, who was running for his fourth term. Stafford, son of former Mayor Howard Stafford, polled 769 votes to 629 for Rutledge.
In his campaign, Stafford said he would work to develop better teamwork, lower gas and sewer rates and increase employment to 95 percent. “Visionary leadership,” his ad said, “can make a big difference.”
In races for alderman, Terry Chewe kept his Ward 1 seat. In Ward 3, incumbent Terry Weeks will face Dennis Simmons in a May 19 runoff. In Ward 4, Rayburn Mapp defeated four candidates, including incumbent Johnny Seale. Mapp faces Republican Trent Baker in the June 2 general election.

McDonald, Walker look to runoff
FULTON – Unofficial results for the mayoral seat in Tuesday’s primary election show incumbent Paul Walker and contender James McDonald in the runoff election on May 19.
Walker, who is running for his third term in office, received 461 votes, or 46 percent, while McDonald received 236 votes, or 24 percent. McDonald, who is running for mayor for the fourth time, has served eight years in the past as alderman-at-large for the city.
The winner will be unopposed in the general election.
A runoff will also be held in the alderman-at-large race between top vote-getter Kevin Nolan and runner-up Wade Wiygul.
In the Ward 1 alderman’s race, incumbent Hayward Wilson was re-elected. In Ward 2, Mike Nanney ran unopposed. Challenger Joey Steele defeated incumbent Charlotte Wiygul for the Ward 3 alderman seat.
In Ward 4, a runoff will be held between Douglas Smith and Barry Childers.
Kent, Hamilton to meet in runoff
NEW ALBANY – New Albany Mayor Tim Kent will face challenger Betsy Hamiliton in a runoff May 19.
Hamiliton, a civic activist, narrowly led the first-term incumbent, with 678 votes to 675 votes in unofficial returns from Tuesday’s Democratic primary.
The third candidate, trucking manager Joey Robbins, received 246 votes.
The winner of the runoff will face independent Jerry Kennamore in the June 2 general election for mayor.
Two of the four incumbents in contested races for seats on the Board of Aldermen lost their re-election bids Tuesday and the other two will have to compete in runoffs.
In Ward 2, Johnny Anderson defeated incumbent Larry Sanford. In Ward 3, incumbent Tom Beasley and Larry Dykes advanced to the runoff.
In Ward 4, J. Pullman and incumbent Bill Tucker will meet again in the May 19 runoff. In the at-large race, Scott Dunnam unseated incumbent Dan Skinner.
Police Chief David Grisham handily won re-election over challenger Danny Robinson Sr.
Young bloods oust Camp
STARKVILLE – Two under-40 Democrats sent 67-year-old Starkville Mayor Dan Camp to the house Tuesday.
Camp, in office one term, lost nearly 2-1 to both Alderman Matt Cox, 39, and attorney Parker Wiseman, 28.
Cox and Wiseman will meet in a May 17 runoff. The winner will face Republican political neophyte Marnita Henderson, 66, a retired public health nurse, in the June 2 general election.
Board of Aldermen contests were in only four of the city’s seven wards.
In Ward 1, Corey Bagwell and Mark Duncan will meet in the Democratic runoff.
In Ward 4, John Michael VanHorn edged out Nick Papas to be the Republican nominee.
In Ward 5, Jeremiah Dumas beat Scott Maynard as the Democratic nominee.
And in Ward 7, Democrat Henry Vaughn was elected over incumbent Jannette Self with no GOP opponent.
Booneville awaits affidavit count
BOONEVILLE – More than 170 affidavit ballots yet to be counted today could drastically change several of the early, unofficial results of Booneville’s elections.
Voters in Tuesday’s Democratic primary were using the ward system for the first time to elect four of the aldermen, with a fifth being elected at-large.
Based on unofficial results that include absentee ballots, Democrat Joe Eaton is headed for the general election to face incumbent Mayor Roger Smith, who is running as an independent, and Republican Ronald “Ron” Kirk.
Eaton received 1,052 votes to Rhonda Greening’s 762 votes.
According to unofficial totals in the aldermen’s races:
– In Ward 1, Wilda Pounds and Jason Michael appear headed for a May 19 runoff. Incumbent Alderman Mitch Barrett finished third.
– In Ward 2, a runoff is set between W. James Chambers and Jeff Williams.
– In Ward 3, three votes separated Paul Bonds, Mark McCoy and Billy Whisenant.
– In Ward 4, David Bolen and Jerry L. Peeks appear headed for a runoff.
– For the at-large seat, Harold Eaton and incumbent Betty Ann Livingston will meet in a runoff.
Boozer re-elected mayor in Amory
AMORY – Howard Boozer won re-election to a second term as mayor in Tuesday’s Democratic primary.
In unofficial returns, Boozer captured 1,002 votes to 291 for Roy Parham and 220 for Tywan Arrington.
“It’s gratifying that the people of Amory realized the hard work that went in during the past four years and what work lies ahead,” Boozer said. He will be unopposed in the general election.
In other races, incumbent Ward 1 Alderman Dan Rogers lost to Buddy Carlisle, who will meet independent Rex Coker in the June 2 general election.
Depending on final vote certification, runoffs on May 19 appear likely in the Ward 4 and alderman at large contests. In Ward 4, Bill Lyle will face Barry Woods Sr. Incumbent Peggy Wilkerson did not seek re-election.
In the at large race, incumbent Glen Bingham will go against Tommy Wilkerson.
Unopposed were Ward 2 Alderman John Darden, Ward 3 Alderman Tony Poss and Police Chief Ronnie Bowen.


NEMS Daily Journal

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