DAILY NEWS STAFF REPORT
June 7, 2013
KERMIT – The town of Kermit will be holding its election for mayor and the five council seats on Tuesday, June 11.
Meanwhile, Matewan and Gilbert are also having their municipal elections, but those elections are not as heated.
Several people have registered to run including the incumbent mayor Johnny Linville and a past mayor Tim Crum in the Kermit election.
Nine persons have signed up for the five town council seats that are available.
The incumbents are Anna Mae Sartin Wellman, Charles B. Sparks, Peggy Moore, Tommy “Tomahawk” Preece and Chuck Castle.
Those challenging for the council seats are Tammy Preece Hodge, Elaine Meddings, Jim Webb and J.R. Hinkle.
Linville has been mayor for the last 16 years, while his challenger, Crum, served as mayor from 1987-89.
Webb, who is running for a council seat, served as Kermit’s mayor from 1991 to 1999.
Hodge, who is the daughter of the late Kermit basketball coach John Preece, is throwing her hat into political ring for the first time. Her father served as mayor back in 1971 to 1973 and her late grandmother Callie Preece served as mayor from 1975 to 1977. Callie is the only female to ever hold the office of mayor in the small hamlet of Kermit. Both John and Callie Preece also served as council members. Hodge’s uncle Wallace Miller served as mayor for several years in the 1960,1970s and 1980s.
As of Friday there had already be about 80 people who had cast their ballots via early voting for Kermit.
In Matewan, Mayor Shelia Kessler is running unopposed. Rebecca Addair is also running without opposition for the Town Recorder position. There are six persons running for five council seats. They include two incumbents, Lois Justice and Eddie Nenni, with four newcomers, Jeff Hatfield, Josh Addair, Kathy McCoy and Francine Jones.
In Gilbert, there is no opposition to the current office holders. Thus, Mayor Vivian Livingood, Recorder Michael Fox, and council members Jennifer Miller, Sharon Murphy, Randy Livingood and Curtis Lester are all running unopposed. Joe Hatfield is also running for the fifth seat, which has been held by Todd Westfall. Westfall chose not to run for re-election.
The polls will open Tuesday morning at 6:30 a.m. and will stay open until 7:30 p.m. The votes will be counted immediately after the polls close and the results should be known a short time later, probably around 8:30 p.m.