After a pair of races for seats on the Wilson County Commission ended in a tie Thursday, it will be up to the county’s governing body to determine how the seats will be filled.
In the race for the District 1 post on the commission, candidates Robert Fields and Tim Roehler each received 526 votes; in the race for 6, challenger Kevin Graves and incumbent Kenny Reich each received 571 votes.
According to Wilson County Administrator of Elections Phillip Warren, the county commission faces to options when it comes to deciding the two contests.
Warren pointed to a section of state law that states the posts can either be filled by a vote of the county commission or by a run-off election.
“The county legislative body may cast the deciding vote for offices filled by the votes of a single county or civil district, or, in the alternative, the legislative body may by resolution call for a run-off election between the tied candidates,” T.C.A. 2-8-111 reads.
Commission to see new faces
A handful of districts will see new representatives on the county commission following Thursday’s election as incumbent commissioners chose not to seek re-election in those districts.
The new District 2 commissioner will be Cyndi Bannach, who claimed 404 votes in her win over Howard Blaydes and Jeff Hartline, who earned 121 and 354 votes, respectively. The seat has previously been held by Adam Bannach.
In the 14th district, Tommy Jones collected 637 votes en route to a victory over Bob Clarke and Michael Ramsey, who garnered 252 and 212 votes, respectively. The seat had been held by Jeff Joines.
With the departure of former District 15 commissioner and Lebanon Police Chief Mike Justice, Lebanon Fire Chief Chris Dowell won the seat, claiming 731 votes to opponent Charmaine H. Major’s 221.
In the 18th district, a seat formerly held by Terry Muncher, Lauren Breeze defeated Bob Richie, 645 to 508.
The new District 21 commissioner will be Mike Kurtz, who defeated opponent and former commissioner Eugene Murray, 396 to 237. The seat had been held by Cindy Brown.
Lastly, the 25th district seat formerly held by Jim Emberton was claimed by Justin Smith. Smith collected 837 votes, while opponents Arlie Bragg, Preston George and John Wayne Hamblen garnered 98, 300 and 257 votes, respectively.
The only incumbent county commissioner to fall in Thursday’s election was District 8’s Frank Bush, who lost by a vote of 560-541 to Kevin Costley.
Sixteen incumbents to return to county commission
In all, 16 incumbent county commissioners will return to their seats: District 3 Commissioner Bobby Franklin, District 4 Commissioner Chad Barnard, District 5 Commissioner Jerry McFarland, District 7 Commissioner Terry Scruggs, District 9 Commissioner Sara Patton, District 10 Commissioner Dan Walker, District 11 Commissioner John P. Gentry, District 12 Commissioner Terry Ashe, District 13 Commissioner Sonja Robinson, District 16 Commissioner Diane G. Weathers, District 17 Commissioner Gary Keith, District 19 Commissioner William Glover, District 20 Commissioner Annette Davis Stafford, District 22 Commissioner Wendell Marlowe, District 23 Commissioner Sue Vanatta and District 24 Commissioner Joy Bishop.