It’s Long by a landslide

Published 9:45 pm Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Trucking business owner Phil Long defeated Bainbridge City Councilman Greg Waddell in Tuesday’s general municipal election.

Long tallied 678 votes to Waddell’s 352 votes, a difference of 326 votes, according to unofficial results.

“I’m estatic,” Long said after he was informed of his victory outside the Decatur County Courthouse Annex on Tuesday night. “I’m extremely proud the citizens have entrusted me with this job.”

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“I want to congratulate Greg on a well-run campaign and for his service to the city,” Long said. “I’m ready to jump in with our new leadership and begin work.”

Incumbent Bainbridge City Councilman Joe Sweet defeated his challenger, retiree Robert Coney. Sweet had 69 votes to Coney’s 19 votes.

Councilman Edward Reynolds won election to mayor unopposed, with 959 voting for him.

Glennie Cox Bench won election to the Bainbridge City Council’s at-large post without opposition, with 820 people voting for her.

In Climax, Charles Hadsock defeated incumbent Elizabeth Sheddy Phillips for the office of mayor. Hadsock had 69 votes to Phillips’ 47 votes.

In the Climax City Council election, incumbent Bob Thomas and newcomer Kaye Perry won council seats. Thomas had 46 votes and Perry had 44 votes. In Climax, the two top voter-getters are elected to the city council.

The other Climax Council candidates’ vote tallies were as follows: Vanessa Martin, 39 votes; incumbent Caldon Parrish, 37 votes; Russell T. Shirley, 24 votes; Norman Gunn, 19 votes.

Reynolds, who began the day with his family by his side watching him vote, followed up a Tuesday evening council meeting with an informal party at Bainbridge Pharmacy, which he owns.

“I’m excited about [becoming mayor],” Reynolds said after Tuesday’s council meeting. “It’s going to be challenging … just as my father did, I place an importance on having a responsible government and providing a good quality of life.”

Asked how his late father, former Bainbridge Mayor Bill K. Reynolds, would have reacted to the election, Edward Reynolds said he thought his dad would have been proud. The late Reynolds, who served more than three decades in city government, passed away in 2006.

“At first, I think he’d tell me how crazy I am after having seen how much time he put into [being mayor],” Reynolds said. “But I think he’d be happy and proud of me.”