Last day to early vote Saturday, May 3

Published 10:00 pm Thursday, May 1, 2014

by Leah Justice
Polk County registered voters have until tomorrow, Saturday, May 3 to vote early for this year’s primary election.
Early voting began on April 24 for next the primary election, which is next Tuesday, May 6.
Early voting can be done today at three locations: the Polk County Board of Elections, the Mill Spring Fire Department or the Green Creek Family Life Center from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m.
Voting on Saturday, May 3 can only be done the Polk County Board of Elections Office in Columbus from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m.
All polling locations will be open on the primary election day of Tuesday, May 6 with voting available from 6:30 a.m. until 7:30 p.m.
This year’s primary includes narrowing candidates to three for both Democrat and Republican candidates for the Polk County Board of Commissioners. Registered voters will vote for the races in their parties. Voters registered Unaffiliated can choose which party they wish to vote or vote for only non-partisan races.
There are also primary races for the U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives District 10, N.C. State Senate District 47 and Supreme Court Associate Justice on Polk County’s ballot.
Open county commissioner seats this year include those of Ted Owens (R), Ray Gasperson (D) and Keith Holbert (R), who have all filed for re-election.
Challengers include Shane Bradley (R), Kenneth Brady (D), Bill Ingham (D), Jake Johnson (R) and Lee Mink (D). Voters will vote for three in each party during the primary election.
The race for U.S. Senate is the largest in this year’s primary, with 13 filing for the seat, currently held by Kay Hagan (D). Running in the primary are Thom Tillis (R), Jim Snyder (R), Edward Kryn (R), Mark Harris (R), Heather Grant (R), Alex Lee Bradshaw (R), Greg Brannon (R), Ted Alexander (R), Will Stewart (D), Ernest T. Reeves (D), Hagan (D), Sean Haugh (L) and Tim D’Annunzio (L). Voters will vote for one candidate in each party.
The primary race for the U.S. House of Representatives District 10, currently held by Patrick McHenry (R) includes McHenry running for the Republican bid against Richard Lynch (R).
The Republican bid for the N.C. State Senate District 47 seat, currently held by Ralph Hise (R) is being challenged by Michael Lavender (R).
The Supreme Court Associate Justice seat held by Robin Hudson will see Hudson, Eric Levinson and Jeanette Doran in the primary. Candidates for judge run non-partisan.
This year’s regular election is scheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 4. The November election in Polk County will see a few races, including for the three open county commissioner seats, for Polk County Sheriff and the Polk County School Board.
Polk County Sheriff Donald Hill (D) is being challenged this year by Pat Staggs (R).
There are four seats up for re-election on the school board this year, including the Coopers Gap seat, the Columbus seat, the Green Creek seat and one Tryon seat.
Incumbent Geoffrey Tennant is being challenged by T. Paul Beiler for the Columbus Township seat; incumbent Sherry Page is being challenged by Jeff Weaver for the Green Creek Township seat and Patrick D. Overholt and Jim Patterson are running for the Tryon Township seat, currently held by James Cowan, who did not seek re-election this year.
Incumbent Judy Jackson is running unopposed for the Coopers Gap Township.
The office of Polk County Clerk of Court is also up for re-election this year, with Pam Hyder (D) running unopposed.
For more information regarding registering to vote or on this year’s election call the office at 828-894-8181 or go to the board of election’s website at
See addresses below for early voting polling places for the primary:

Polk County Board of Elections Office, 40 Courthouse St. Columbus

Green Creek Family Life Center, 2382 Coxe Rd., Tryon

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Mill Spring Fire Department, 66 School Rd., Mill Spring