Election Day: Brunch bills, sales tax, mayors, dozens of local races decided

Election Day: Brunch bills, sales tax, mayors, dozens of local races decided

People wait in a long line to vote Saturday at the Cobb County Board of Elections and Registration office in Marietta, GA October 27, 2018. STEVE SCHAEFER / SPECIAL TO THE AJC

It’s an off-year, electorally speaking — but plenty of metro Atlanta communities held important votes on Tuesday.
There are scores of mayoral and city council seats up for grabs. In DeKalb County, a controversial ethics referendum failed. Henry County voters were asked to decide if they want to pay a penny sales tax for another five years, but those results had not been reported.
Nearly a dozen communities will also vote on “brunch bill” referendums, which would allow their local restaurants to start selling alcoholic beverages at 11 a.m. on Sundays.
Cherokee County
Councilman Bill Grant and retired educator Dwight Pullen faced off to replace departing Mayor Gene Hobgood. Grant won with 75 percent.
Incumbent Joellen Wilson was able to fend off challengers Bob Reilly and Kathy Strom in the Ward 1 council race. Incumbent Farris Yawn lost to Brooke Schmidt for the Ward 3 seat.
Clayton County
In Morrow, Jeff DeTar faced off against Bonita Crawford and John Lampl to keep his seat as the Clayton County city’s mayor.
Crawford is a U.S. Army veteran and active member of Clayton County Emergency Preparedness program. Lampl is Morrow’s former city manager who is best known for his role in the failed Olde Town Morrow mixed-use development near Southlake Mall, in which he was charged with circumventing state building laws. Lampl is leading with 47 percent and DeTar will advance to the runoff.
Other races (winner/leader in bold):
College Park
Mayor: Bianca Motley Broom, John Duke, Ronald Fears, Pamela Gay, Kaseem Ladipo, Jack Longino (I)
City Council Ward 1: Ambrose Clay (I), Thomas Kuziniacki, Kathleen McQueen
City Council Ward 3: Ken Allen, Sharonda Cody Boyd
Morrow
City Council Post 2: Jeanell Bridges (I), Van T. Tran
City Council Post 4: Larry Ferguson (I), Gilda White Hutcheson, Khoa Vuong
Voters also decided on a “brunch bill” referendum that would allow local restaurants to start serving alcohol at 11 a.m. on Sundays. It failed 53 to 47 percent.
Cobb County
In Smyrna, five candidates are in the running to replace longtime Mayor Max Bacon, who has led the city for more than 30 years. Those candidates are Alex Backry, Ryan Campbell, Laura Mireles, Derek Norton and Steven Rasin. Norton is leading and Campbell would head into the runoff.
Several Smyrna City Council seats are also contested, including the races for Ward 2 (incumbent Andrea Bluestein is trailing Austin Wagner by just two votes), Ward 3 (incumbent Maryline Blckburn lost to Travis Lindley), Ward 5 (incumbent Susan Wilkinson held her seat against James “JD” Smith and Suz Kaprich) and Ward 7 (David W. Monroe lost to Lewis A. Wheaton).
Other races:
Acworth
Alderman Post 1: Butch Price (I), Crystal Bailey Williams
Alderman Post 3: Brett North (I), Salome W. Sadera
Austell
Mayor: Ollie Clemons (I), Ikaika Anderson, Chris Djoins, Cindy D. Thompson
City Council Ward 2: S. Brown, Devon D. Myrick
City Council At Large, Post 1: Melanie Maria Elder, Sarah Shurden
Kennesaw
City Council Post 1: James Eaton (I), Karen Gitau, Antonio Jones
Powder Springs
City Council Post 1: Patrick Wayne Bordelon (I), Larry W. Thomas
City Council Post 2: Patricia Wisdom (I), Nancy Hudson, Guenevere Reed
DeKalb County
The entire county will vote on a referendum that would restructure DeKalb’s ethics board, after the Georgia Supreme Court ruled that the way its members are currently appointed is unconstitutional. Critics of the proposal say the restructuring would weaken the ethics board and reduce some of its powers. The referendum failed 62 to 38 percent.
Every city in DeKalb also has municipal elections for mayor or city council this fall; several incumbent mayors are facing challengers.
Other races:
Avondale Estates
Mayor: Jonathan Elmore (I), Clai Brown
City Commission: Brian Fisher (I), Marguerite Belline, Candace Jones, Dee Merriam (runoff)
Brookhaven
Mayor: John Ernst (I), Jennifer Heath
City Council District 3: Dimitrius Owens, Madeleine Norine Simmons
Residents will also vote whether to approve a property tax homestead exemption for the city. It passed 88 to 12 percent.
Chamblee
City Council District 2: Shaun Lewis, Leslie Robson (I)
City Council District 3: Thomas Hogan (I), Karen Lupton
City Council At Large: Darron Kusman (I), Stephen Watson
Residents will also vote whether to approve a property tax homestead exemption for the city. It passed 83 to 17 percent.
Clarkston
City Council (choose three): Andrea Cervone (I), Awet “Howard” Eyasu (I), Darara Timotewos Gubo, Laura Hopkins, Debra Johnson, Samuel Rai
Decatur
City commissioner, District 1, Post B: Erin Braden, George Dusenbury
City commissioner, District 2, Post B: Lesa Mayer, Chris Stirn, Phillip Wiedower
City commissioner at large: Tony Powers (I), Christopher Gagnon
Doraville
Mayor: Joseph Geierman, Donna Pittman (I), Tom Hart, MD Nasar (runoff)
City Council District 1: Gerald Evans, Tom Owens, Andy Yeoman
City Council District 2: Danielle Brown, Jessica Killingsworth, Rebekah Cohen Morris
City Council District 2 (special election): Tammie Bailey, Chris Henshaw
City Council District 3: Shannon Hillard (I), Maria Alexander
Dunwoody
Mayor: Lynn Deutsch, Terry Nall
City Council At Large, Post 4: Stacey Harris, Robert Miller
City Council At Large, Post 5: Joe Seconder, Heyward Wescott
Lithonia
Mayor: Yolanda Donaldson, Shameka Reynolds, Cindy Thomas
City Council (choose two): Darold Honore Jr., David McCoy, Vanneriah Wynn
Stone Mountain
City Council Post 1: Richard Mailman (I), Gina Stroud Cox, Richard Langley, Chancey Parker (runoff)
City Council Post 2: Bernie Waller (I), Claus Friese, Clint Monroe (runoff)
City Council Post 3: Chakira Johnson (I), Andrea Redmond
Stonecrest
Mayor: Jason Lary (I), Diane Adoma, Charles Hill Jr.
City Council District 5 (special election): Nathan Alexander, Tammy Grimes, Barbara Hall, Dave Marcus, Virginia Pierce-Kelly, Christopher Seabrook (runoff)
Tucker
City Council Post 2, District 1: Bill Rosenfeld (I), Christine Bloodworth
Fayette County
Mayors Ed Johnson and Eric Dial are running unopposed in Fayetteville and Tyrone, respectively. But there are other contested races on the ballot in those municipalities, as well as in Peachtree City.
Other races:
Fayetteville
City Council Post 1: Harlan Shirley (I), Darryl Langford, Phil Onyedumekwu
City Council Post 2: Kathaleen Brewer (I), Joe Clark, Oyin J. Mitchell, Kevin Pratt
Peachtree City
City Council Post 1: Phil Prebor (I), Oobi Childs, Morgan Hallmon
City Council Post 2: Mike King (I), Darryl Csicsila, Steven N. Newton
Tyrone
Town Council Post 1: Linda Howard (I), David Barlow
Town Council Post 2: Bill Campbell, Michael Edwards, Melissa Hill
Forsyth County
Voters in the city of Cumming will have one contested race to decide. Joey Cochran, Jason May and Brent Patrick are all running for the open Post 3 seat on the City Council. Cochran won with 57 percent.
Forsyth’s only city will also decide on a “brunch bill” referendum that would allow local restaurants to start serving alcohol at 11 a.m. on Sundays passed 58 to 42 percent.
Fulton County
Residents of 12 cities in Fulton County cast ballots where the make-up of local leadership could change. That includes three longtime mayors of cities in southern Fulton County who face challengers.
For College Park, partially also in Clayton County, five people have stepped up to challenge the mayor, who has led the city since the Olympics came to Atlanta. In Hapeville, the 2.5-square-mile airport-adjacent city, the mayor has held the big seat since 2004. He faces one challenger. Palmetto’s mayor, who has led the city since 1986 (except for a break from 2008 to 2011 when he was beaten at the ballot box) also drew two challengers. The city is in both Fulton and Coweta counties.
Other races:
Alpharetta
City Council Post 6: Dan Merkel (I), Abu Bakkar Ngila Jalloh, Clifford Martin
Voters will also approved two ballot measures to expand the city’s homestead property tax exemptions.
Chattahoochee Hills
City Council District 1: Rick Stephens (I), Ruby Foster
City Council District 3: Anita McGinnis, Laurie Searle
City Council District 5: Troy Bettis, Sarah Davis, Renee Prince, Ross Williams
College Park
Mayor: Jack Longino (I), Bianca Motley Broom, John Duke, Ronald Fears, Pamela Gay, Kaseem Ladipo
City Council Ward 1: Ambrose Clay (I), Kathleen McQueen, Thomas Kuziniacki
City Council Ward 3: Ken Allen, Sharonda Cody Boyd
East Point
City Council Ward A: Davion Lewis, Lance Robertson
City Council Ward B: Thomas Calloway (I), Marie Terry Williams
City Council Ward C: Myron Cook (I), Earnestine Pittman
City Council Ward D: Stephanie Gordon (I), Eddie Lee Brewster, Erica Clemmons Dean
Fairburn
At Large Council Seats (choose three): Andrew James Whitmore, Jr. (I), Linda J. Davis (I), Patrick Pallend (I), Willis Earl Ray
Hapeville
Mayor: Alan Hallman (I), Rod Mack
Alderman At-Large: Michael T. Rast (I), Lucy Dolan, Brian Wismer
Voters also approved on two ballot measures to expand the city’s homestead property tax exemptions.
Johns Creek
City Council Post 2: Royce Reinecke, Dilip Tunki, Brian Weaver
City Council Post 4: Chris Coughlin (I), Kent Altom, Marybeth Cooper, Adam Thomas
City Council Post 6: Erin Elwood, Judy LeFave, Issure C. Yang
Milton
City Council District 2, Post 2: Judy Burds, Paul Moore
Palmetto
Mayor: J. Clark Boddie (I), Michael Arnold, Torrance Stephens
City Council (top three vote-getters get a seat): Robert Deon Arnold, Scott Cannon, Robert Montgomery, Patty O’Hara-Willey (I), Larry Adam Parrott, Martell Pee, Teresa Thomas-Smith
City Council (unexpired term ends Dec. 31, 2021): Melis Andrade Espinoza, Nathan Slaton, Jessica Wilbanks
Roswell
City Council Post 1: Marcelo Zapata (I), Donald J. Horton
City Council Post 2: Michael Palermo (I), Geoff Smith
City Council Post 3: Keith Goeke, Christine Hall, Lisa Holland, Kay Howell
Municipal Judge: Brian Hansford (I), Philip Mansell
South Fulton
City Council District 1: Catherine Foster Rowell (I), Mathis Ben Colquitt
City Council District 5: Rosie Jackson (I), Duane L. McClain, Corey Alan Reeves, Clyde Eugene Sampson II
City Council District 7: Mark Baker (I), Eric L. Richardson
Voters will also decided on separate ballot measures that would allow the city to use tax allocation districts and create a homestead exemption for residents. Both passed.
Union City
City Council (choose two): Christina Hobbs (I), Tonya Isles, Brian Jones (I)
Gwinnett County
In Buford, longtime city commission leader Phillip Beard did not draw an opponent, ensuring that his run of more than four decades in office will continue.
Beard’s city commission seat also comes with a spot on the Buford school board — but two other school board seats will be up for grabs Tuesday, in the first local election since now-former superintendent Geye Hamby was allegedly caught on tape spewing racist epithets.
Incumbent school board member Daren Perkins will face off against newcomer Melissa Ferris-Ozkan.
Lien Diaz and Matt Peevy are both running for the seat vacated by Beth Lancaster.
Other races: 
Berkeley Lake
Voters will decide on a “brunch bill” referendum that would allow local restaurants to start serving alcohol at 11 a.m. on Sundays.
Braselton
Town Council District 1: Becky Richardson (I), Joy Basham, Richard Mayberry
Town Council District 3: Tony Funari (I), Jim Joedecke
Dacula
City Council: Susan Robinson (I), Ann R. Mitchell
Voters also passed a “brunch bill” referendum that would allow local restaurants to start serving alcohol at 11 a.m. on Sundays.
Grayson
Mayor: Allison Wilkerson (I), Joseph Runyon
City Council Post 2: Bob Foreman (I), Donald Fairnot, Kimberly Love
City Council Post 4: Linda S. Jenkins (I), Jennifer Nichols
Lawrenceville
City Council Post 1: Eric Hoskins, Glenn Martin, Austin Thompson
Lilburn
City Council Post 2: John Patrick Abellera, Scott Batterton (I)
Voters also passed a “brunch bill” referendum that would allow local restaurants to start serving alcohol at 11 a.m. on Sundays.
Loganville
City council (choose three): Jay Boland (I), Misty Cox, Linda Dodd (I), Bill DuVall, Femi Oduwole
Norcross
Mayor: Craig Newton (I), Chuck Paul
City Council At-Large Post 1: Alex R. Hecht, Jeff Hopper, Matt Myers
City Council At-Large Post 2: Bruce Gaynor, Tyler Hannel, David Benjamin McLeroy
Voters also decided on a referendum that would change elected officials’ terms from two years to four. That passed.
Voters also passed a “brunch bill” referendum that would allow local restaurants to start serving alcohol at 11 a.m. on Sundays.
Peachtree Corners
City Council Post 5: Lorri Christopher (I), Cherlon Mathias
Snellville
City Council Post 1: Dave Emanuel (I), Cortez Riden
City Council Post 2: Wanda S. Blow, Solange Destang, Brittany E. Marmol, Thomas S. Mwambay
Sugar Hill
City Council Post 1: Brandon Hembree (I), Marjorie Prophete
City Council Post 2: Marc Cohen (I), Amber Chambers
Suwanee
City Council Post 1: , Doug Ireland (I), Heather J. Hall
City Council Post 2: Dick Goodman (I), Laurence “Larry” Pettiford
Henry County
Henry County voters will consider a fifth SPLOST agreement. The special purpose local option sales tax would collect an estimated $204 million over five years and be used for infrastructure, parks, municipal buildings, public safety equipment and repayment of debt. It passed 53 percent to 47 percent.
Henry residents will also be asked whether they want to move Henry County courts and other administrative offices from near the McDonough Square to a spot near the Henry County jail.
Other races:
Hampton
City Council (choose three): Henry Byrd (I), Sherry Ann Chaney, Dexter B. Cladd, Monica S. Davis, Marty Meeks, Mary Ann Mitcham, Adrian Stroud, Ann Tarpley (I)
Voters also passed a “brunch bill” referendum that would allow local restaurants to start serving alcohol at 11 a.m. on Sundays.
Locust Grove
City Council (choose three): Carlos Greer (I), Otis Hammock (I),Michael Reid Brackett Jr., Rudy Breedlove, Rod Shearouse
Voters also passed a “brunch bill” referendum that would allow local restaurants to start serving alcohol at 11 a.m. on Sundays.
McDonough
City Council At Large: Carla L. Dennis, Benjamin W. Pruett (I), Brandon D. Robinson Sr.
City Council District 3: Craig Elrod (I), Janice Scotchman
City Council District 4: KamaliKamVarner (I), Teresa Wheeler
Voters passed a “brunch bill” referendum that would allow local restaurants to start serving alcohol at 11 a.m. on Sundays.
Stockbridge
City Council (choose three): Elton Alexander (I), Nathan Banks, Yolanda Barber, Jacqueline Blalock, John Blount (I), Arthur Christian, Cherice Hollis, Kenneth McFarland, Neat Robinson (I)
Voters also passed a “brunch bill” referendum that would allow local restaurants to start serving alcohol at 11 a.m. on Sundays.
Reporters Ben Brasch, J.D. Capelouto, Amanda Coyne, Kristal Dixon, Arielle Kass, and Leon Stafford contributed to this report