Filing opens July 7 for municipal elections

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Brittney Burns – Staff Writer

This November, voters will head to the polls and cast their votes for municipal offices in Macon County.  Filing for municipal elections opens on Friday, July 7, at noon and will run through Friday, July 21.

In Franklin, the office of the mayor and three council members will appear on the ballot. In Highlands, the office of the mayor and two commissioners will be up for election.

Franklin Mayor Bob Scott, who was first elected as mayor in 2013, plans to seek re-election this November. The office of Franklin’s mayor is a two year term, and if elected, could be Scott’s third term in office. The filing fee for Franklin mayor is $72.

“I would like to see several projects to completion, the Town Bridge, a resolution deciding what to do with the Whitmire property — public or private use— increased emphasis on our town infrastructure, studies to begin seeking another water source to meet future needs, increased promotion of our retail and entrepreneurial businesses, urban renewal and repurposing of properties which have fallen into disrepair,” Scott said of his reasoning for seeking re-election. “I also would like to see urban renewal for the River District and the property around the Nikwasi Mound. Also more emphasis on preserving the environment and beautification. I will continue to support our businesses not only in town but in the county as well. I also serve on the executive committee of the NC League of Municipalities which represents the nearly 600 towns and cities in North Carolina which has given me contacts across the state and the opportunity to serve on the League’s Legislative Action Committees. I will continue to support the NC Open Meetings and Public Records laws.  Also it is important to me to preserve the freedoms we have under the First Amendment of our Constitution.”

Council member Barbara McRae is in her first term on the Franklin Town Council. McRae was elected four years ago, and council members’ terms are for four years.

“I haven’t decided whether to run again or not, but I do want to see some projects through, and I really enjoy participating in town business, especially when opportunities present to shape or influence the future,” said McRae.

Council member Patti Abel was also elected in November 2013 for her first term and does not plan to seek re-election this November, leaving her seat up for grabs.

Franklin Council member Billy Mashburn, who has served the town of Franklin for more than two decades, did not return a question for comment regarding whether or not he will seek re-election.

The filing fee for Franklin Town Council is $36.

In Highlands, Mayor Pat Taylor is up for re-election after serving his first term in office. The Highlands mayor position is a four-year term and the filing fee for the office is $10. Taylor plans to seek re-election to a second term.

“I enjoy serving the people of Highlands as their mayor,” said Taylor. “I believe I can continue to make positive contributions toward the betterment of Highlands in the next four years. I look forward to continuing to work with our citizens, the town board and staff. I believe we all can shape a wonderful future while at the same time preserving what we hold so dear about Highlands, that is the beautiful environment and sense of community. It would be an honor to serve another term.”

The filing fee for the Town of Highlands commissioner seats is $5. The four-year terms for Amy Patterson and Donnie Calloway are both up for re-election.

Filing for all offices will take place at the Macon County Board of Elections, located in the basement of the Macon County Courthouse.

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