LUMBERTON — The line begins forming on Monday for the May primary, during which candidates for the General Election in November will be picked for a variety of offices, ranging from sheriff to the General Assembly, and voters will make a final decision on who represents them on the school board.
Filing can be done at the local Board of Elections office at 800 N. Elm St. beginning at noon and continuing each weekday from 8:15 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. until Feb. 28, the last day to file, when the deadline to do is noon.
The primary is on May 8, with the winners advancing to the General Election on Nov. 7. The exception is the non-partisan race for the Board of Education, with the May winners being sworn in in July.
The local headliner will be the sheriff’s race, where Kenneth Sealey, a Democrat who was appointed to office in 2004 and had won re-election to four-year terms three times, has indicated he would not run again, leaving the race wide open.
The filing fee is $793.
The race for another top law enforcement seat also appears wide open as Democrat Johnson Britt, the district attorney for Judicial District 16B since 1994, has said he would not seek a seventh four-year term. Britt said he would run for the U.S. House of Representatives if district lines were redrawn to not include Robeson County and Charlotte in the same district.
The filing fee for district attorney is $1,282.
There are four seats that will be available on the Robeson County Board of Commissioners: District 2, which has been represented by Lance Herndon, a Democrat, since 2009; District 4, which has been represented by Noah Woods, a Democrat, since 1990; District 6, which has been represented by Berlester Campbell, a Democrat, since 2014; and District 8, which has been represented by David Edge, the lone Republican on the board, since 2010. All are four-year terms.
The filing fee is $145.
Four seats on the Board of Education will be decided during the May primary. Up for re-election to four-year terms are: Brenda Fairley-Ferebee, the District 2 representative since 1996; board Chairman Peggy Wilkins Chavis, the District 3 representative since 2014; Mike Smith, the District 6 representative since 1990; and Dwayne Smith, the District 8 representative since 2010.
Candidates for school board do not file by party. The filing fee for school board is $92.
Shelena Smith, the clerk of Robeson County Superior Court, is a Democrat who will be seeking her second four-year term. The filing fee is $998.
The seats for all five legislators who represent Robeson County will be up for grabs. All are two-year terms.
If they seek re-election, Rep. Garland Pierce, a Democrat from Wagram and the longest serving local legislator, would be seeking an eighth term representing District 48, Rep. Charles Graham, a Democrat from Lumberton, would be seeking his fifth term representing District 47, and Ken Goodman, a Democrat from Rockingham, would be seeking his fifth term representing District 66.
The county’s two Republican representative, both in their freshman term, are Rep. Brenden Jones of Tabor City, who represents District 46, and Sen. Danny Britt of Lumberton, who presents District 13.
The filing fee for all the legislative seats is $207.
Voters will also be deciding on many judicial seats statewide.
On the national level, Rep. Robert Pittenger, a Republican from Charlotte, is expected to seek a third four-year term representing District 9 in the U.S. House.
Editor Donnie Douglas can be reached at 910-416-5649 or at [email protected]