Candidate Wes Ehlers has won the District 1 City Council seat by 74 votes over opponent Jimmy Carson. The seat was formerly held by Marianna Keesee.
The results of Tuesday’s election came in about 35 minutes after the polls closed at 7 p.m. at Election Central, which is located at the corner of Chesnutt Avenue and Fourth Street.
The election summary report shows that Ehlers received 212 votes while Carson garnered 138 votes. Vice Mayor Johnny Terrell ran unopposed for District 3. He received 35 votes.
Ehlers’ reaction to the outcome was excitement. He told The Gazette during a phone interview that he appreciated all of the support he received from the community and that he is going to do what he’s been telling the citizens from the start. He also thanked Carson for running a great campaign. He said Carson deserves a pat on the back for the way he ran in the race.
Ehlers says he’s ready to get to work and represent District 1.
Carson told The Gazette in a phone interview that he and Ehlers each ran good, clean campaigns. He said they both put a lot of work into it, and he thinks Ehlers will make a good councilman. He commented that Ehlers was a great opponent and has a great future ahead of him. Carson said he enjoyed running and that it was a good experience; he has no regrets. Carson also thanked all of his supporters and friends who helped on the campaign.
One of the more controversial vote on the ballot was the Sunday alcohol sale, which was a close race. Voters were asked, “Shall the governing authority of the city of Tifton be authorized to permit and regulate Sunday sales of distilled spirits or alcoholic beverages for beverage purposes by the drink?” and “Shall the governing authority of the city of Tifton be authorized to permit and regulate package sales by retailers of both malt beverages and wine on Sundays between the hours of 12:30 and 11:30 p.m.?”
The results show that 475 citizens voted yes for the Sunday sale (package) while 343 voted no. For the by the drink referendum, 481 citizens voted yes and 343 voted no. The homestead exemption also passed by a landslide, garnering 723 yes votes and 92 no votes. The City Council asked that the homestead exemption be further increased to $35,000 for all persons 65 years of age and older.
Approximately 830 Tifton citizens voted.
To contact reporter Latasha Ford, call 382-4321.