Special Election Jan. 28 for State House District 171

Published 3:21 pm Friday, January 3, 2020

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Advanced voting for the Jan. 28th Special Election for state House District 171 begins on Monday, Jan. 6. Advanced voting for this special called election concludes on Friday, Jan. 24.

All advanced voting in Decatur County will be at the Courthouse Annex, or the Elections Office, located at 122 W. Water St. in Bainbridge. Hours are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. There will be Saturday voting on Jan. 18 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Fairgrounds will NOT be used as an advanced voting location.

There are three candidates seeking to fill the unexpired term of the late Rep. Jay Powell. Those candidates are, as they appear on the ballot, the following:

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Tommy Akridge (REP)

Joe Campbell (REP)

Jewell Howard (DEM)

If a runoff is necessary, it is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 25.

House District 171 includes the northern half of Decatur County, all of Mitchell County and part of Colquitt County. The precincts in Decatur County to open are Brinson, Coliseum, Fairgrounds, Mount Pleasant and West Bainbridge. As a reminder, the polling location for West Bainbridge has been moved to the School Support Center located at 507 Martin St.

If you would like a ballot mailed to you, you must fill out an application for an absentee ballot for this election. Those requests for this election will NOT be rolled over to the March 24 Presidential Preference Primary. But, if you would like to have an absentee ballot for the Presidential Preference Primary, you may go ahead and send your application in now.

Voters will use the state’s new paper-ballot system. Although Decatur County served as a pilot for the Nov. 5, 2019, Municipal Election, many voters in the county have not experienced the new voting equipment.

If you would like more information that includes a video on how to use it, you may go to Secure the Vote, https://securevotega.com/.

Voters are strongly encouraged to learn about the new system. A key advantage of the new voting system is there are ways to review your paper ballot, both on the ballot-marking device and with your printed ballot prior to scanning into the tabulator.

During this special election there is only the one contest, but you are strongly encouraged to review your ballot. If you see something that you would like to change, please request from a poll worker to spoil your ballot and receive another one.

You must have your spoiled ballot with you when requesting another one. To ensure your privacy, please fold your spoiled ballot up to the QR code so those assisting you can’t see your selections.

Once you are satisfied with your selections on your ballot, you may scan it in the tabulator.

Once this is done, you have voted and you can’t vote again. If you leave the polling location with your ballot, you cannot return and try to vote.

For more information or questions, please contact the Decatur County Board of Elections at (229) 243-2087. Our email is elections@decaturcountyga.gov. Our fax is (229) 248-3743. Please follow us on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/decaturcountyelections/.