Two new members were elected to the Letcher County Board of Education in Tuesday’s General Election. New members were also elected to the city councils in Whitesburg and Jenkins.
Melinda “Mendy” Boggs defeated incumbent school board member Mike Harris and Bobby D. Lewis in District Four. Boggs received 557 votes. Harris garnered 517 votes and Lewis 505 votes.
In the race for the Letcher County Education District Two board seat, Robert Kiser defeated incumbent John R. Spicer, 522 votes to 391. Board Chairman Will Smith was unopposed in the race for the District Three seat and collected 1,107 votes.
Jenkins Independent School Board Members Tracy Goff and Paulette Sexton were also unopposed. Goff received 680 votes and Sexton 669 votes.
Letcher Commonwealth’s Attorney Edison G. Banks II, a Republican, was re-elected to a third term with 5,755 votes, compared to 2,699 votes for Democrat Frank Riley.
Running unopposed were Letcher Circuit Clerk Margaret Nichols, 29th District State Senator Johnny Ray Turner, 92nd District State Representative John W. Short and 94th District State Representative Leslie Combs. Nichols garnered 7,185 votes, Turner 5,858 votes, Short 2,326 votes and Combs 3,835 votes.
Whitesburg will be getting one new council member, but who that is won’t be known until a coin toss can be held between Matthew Thomas Butler and Tom Sexton, who each received 282 votes. Letcher Court Clerk Winston Meade said county election results will be certified by the Letcher County Board of Elections on Thursday. Meade said a tie hasn’t occurred in the 14 years he has served as court clerk and he is unsure when a coin toss will take place. Meade said it could possibly happen in the next couple of weeks.
Regaining five of the six seats on the Whitesburg City Council are incumbents Larry D. Everidge with 447 votes, John Williams with 390 votes, Robin Bowen Watko with 352 votes, James W. “Jimmy” Bates with 390 votes and Sheila Page Shortt with 300 votes.
Sharon Kaye Sexton, who was appointed to complete the term of her sister, the late Freda McFall, received 238 votes. Gary “Gabo” Collins received 255 votes.
In Jenkins, incumbent city council member Terry Braddock was defeated after garnering 259 votes. New council members are Robert Adams with 360 votes and Kyle Walker with 361 votes.
Re-elected to the Jenkins council are Richard Damron with 421 votes, Carol Anne Litts with 402 votes, Chuck Anderson with 382 votes and Rebecca Terrill Amburgey with 343 votes.
Garnett Bentley had 320 votes and Roy Triplett had 255 votes.
A race for six seats on the Fleming-Neon City Council was also on the ballot, but none of the positions were being contested. Challenger Linda Cantrell joined incumbents Robert Champion, James D. Collins, Thomas D. “Tom” Haynes and Trey Quillen on the council. Quillen garnered 177 votes. Cantrell and Haynes received 169 votes each. Collins and Champion each had 155 votes.
Incumbent Will T. Scott won the battle against Janet L. Stumbo for Justice of the Supreme Court (7th District). Scott of Pikeville received 4,476 votes in Letcher County and Stumbo, of Prestonsburg, who is the present Court of Appeal Justice, received 3,288 votes.
Scott also won the race district wide. With 93 percent of the vote counted Tuesday night, Scott received 77,780 votes, or 57 percent, to 56,746 votes, or 42 percent, for Stumbo.
Scott had made a campaign issue out of Stumbo’s last name, questioning why she was not using her married name of Pillersdorf. Voters in the region still strongly believe wives should take their husbands’ last names.
The 58-year-old Stumbo was the first woman elected to the Supreme Court in 1993. She was re-elected without opposition, but was defeated by Scott in her bid for a third term.
Incumbent Fifth District U.S. Representative Harold “Hal” Rogers was easily re-elected to another term in Congress here and elsewhere in the district. In Letcher County Rogers, a Republican, received 6,640 votes. Democratic candidate Kenneth S. Stepp got 1,761 votes.
By a large margin county voters approved a constitutional amendment which asks, “Are you in favor of amending the Kentucky constitution to state that the citizens of Kentucky have the personal right to hunt, fish and harvest wildlife, subject to laws and regulations that promote conservation and preserve the future of hunting and fishing, and to state that public hunting and fishing shall be a preferred means of managing and controlling wildlife?” The vote was 6,811 in favor of the amendment and 634 against. The amendment also passed statewide.
President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden lost badly in Letcher County to challengers Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, 6,811 to 1,702. Receiving 137 votes were Gary Johnson and James P. Gray, 77 votes were cast for Randall A. Terry and Missy Reilly Smith and 31 votes went to Jill Stein and Cheri Honkala.
The results of Tuesday’s presidential race here indicates that at least 921 voters left Obama, who has been accused of hurting the coal industry, and threw their support to Romney instead. In 2008, when Obama easily won election to the White House nationwide, the final tally here was 5,367 for Sen. John McCain and 2,623 for Obama.
Democrats outnumber Republicans in Letcher County, 11,921 to 3,751.