Two embattled seats on the Hoschton City Council were filled with this week's elections.

Tracy Carswell won 54% of the vote over Jared Thompson while James Lawson won with 62% of the vote over Raphael Mayberry.

The results will now give the council a full 5-member board. At one time, the council had been down to just two members following resignations in late 2019 and early 2020.

The town also saw lawsuits related to the election when a voter challenged the residency of James Lawson. The county elections board initially removed Lawson from the ballot, but that action was later overturned by a judge.

In the meantime, Lawson's opponent Mayberry was sworn in to the city council, a move that turned out to be premature given the litigation over Lawson.

Lawson's name was restored to the ballot, but then the COVID virus hit and delayed the election until June 9.


Gabriel Bradford has apparently won the position of State Court Solicitor of Jackson County by just 14 votes out of over 11,600 cast in the race.

Bradford had 5,848 votes to David's 5,834. David had led the race following the counting of in-person voting, but absentee voting pushed Bradford to the winner's slot.

The solicitor's position was an open seat following the retirement of Don Moore.

The Post 1 seat on the Jackson County Board of Education is headed for a runoff between Rick Sanders who got 46% (893) of the vote and Rob Johnson who received 33% (636) of the vote. The winner will replace retiring board member Michael Cronic.

In other local contest, incumbents trounced challengers:

• Incumbent Sheriff Janis Mangum won 90% of the vote (11,582) to Johnny Wood's 1,338 votes.

• Incumbent tax commissioner Candace Taylor Heaton won 71% of the vote (8,880) over challenger Wes Colley who had 3,693 votes.

• Incumbent coroner Keith Whitfield won with 83% of the vote (10,337) over challenger Shannon Stephens who had 2,083 votes.

• Incumbent District 2 county commissioner Chas Hardy won with 79% of the vote (2,093) over challenger Tommy Rainey who had 554 votes. Hardy will face Democrat Brodriche Jackson in November.


In the crowded Republican District 9 race for Congress, Matt Gurtler is headed for a runoff with Jackson Countian Andrew Clyde. The winner will face the winner of a Democratic runoff between Brooke Siskin and Devin Pandy.

In the contest for State Senate District 50, which covers part of Jackson County, there will be a runoff between Bo Hatchett and Stacey Hall for the Republican nomination. The winner will face Democrat Dee Delany in November.


In local issues on the ballot, a rise in the amount of income to qualify for homestead exemption won in all three school districts, a move that will give a tax break to some homeowners.

In the City of Commerce, Sunday alcohol by the drink was approved with 58% voting Yes.

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