LUMBERTON — The run-off election for the seat in District 2 between incumbent Robeson County Commissioner Hubert Sealey and former Berlester Campbell, a former commissioner, will cost the county between $10,000 and $15,000, according to the director of the local Board of Elections.
“We don’t know how much the election will cost yet,” G.L. Pridgen said. “It depends on the number of ballots ordered and the number of of employees working the election. It’s really hard to give a figure right now.”
Pridgen said that when the Democratic Party run-off election is held on July 15, only voters in the 13 precincts making up District 2 will take part. The commissioners race is the only contest on the ballot.
Pridgen said that any properly registered Democrat residing in District 2 can vote in the runoff even if that person did not vote in the Democratic primary on May 6. Any registered unaffiliated voter who voted Democrat in the May 6 primary can also participate in the July 15 run-off, Pridgen said.
Since there is no Republican run-off, no registered Republicans can participate in the election, said Pridgen.
Pridgen said that early voting will be held only at the Board of Elections office on North Walnut Street in downtown Lumberton. Early voting will begin on July 3 and continue through July 12. Ballots can be cast from 8:15 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. on weekdays, and from 8:15 a.m. to 1 p.m. on July 12, which is a Saturday.
Although the number of days for early voting was reduced statewide to 10 days, more Robeson County voters went to the polls early for the May 6 primary than in 2010, according to Pridgen. In May, there were 4,607 one-stop ballots cast. In 2010 only 3,507 votes were cast during the early voting period.
According to the State Board of Elections, Robeson County followed the statewide trend of more voters casting one-stop ballots in 2014 than cast one-stop ballots in 2010. In the 2010 primaries, 19.7 percent voted one-stop, with that number jumping in 2014 to 25.8 percent, the state board said.
A news release from the State Board of Elections also states that second primaries are being held on July 15 to decide 19 contests in 37 counties. No statewide ballot item is required in any of the second primaries.
The run-off election for the District 2 commissioner’s seat was requested by Sealey, who finished behind Campbell in a six-way race. Neither Sealey, with 666 votes, or Campbell, with 833 votes, received the necessary 40 percent of total votes cast to claim victory and prevent a run-off.
Sealey joined the board in 2002 when he narrowly defeated Campbell, who was the sitting commissioner then.