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|Light turnout for elections|
HILL, JOHNSON IN RUN-OFF FOR MAYOR
A run-off between Ken Hill and Jackie Johnson will decide who will be the next mayor of Winnsboro.
Hill and Johnson received more votes than Deacue Fields Jr. and Leroy Scott, the other men who ran for mayor in Saturday's primary election, but no candidate got the majority of votes needed to avoid a run-off election on May 1.
Voters gave Hill, a Republican, 34 percent of the 1,631 ballots cast, with Johnson, a Democrat, scoring 29 percent, 471 votes. Fields got 354 or 22 percent of votes, and Scott received 13 percent, 219 votes.
Fields walked away from the election with 22 percent of the vote, 354 votes and Scott received 13 percent, 219 votes. About 53 percent of the registered voters casts ballots in the mayor's election.
Hill, who waited for election results at a party at his Delta Glass & Trim office, said he would like to continue to focus on issues as he heads into the general election. He doesn't think race will be a deciding factor in the election, even though he will contend with a black candidate in a city where the majority of voters are also black.
"This has not been about race. you will be able to look at the results (in the primary election) and you will see that every candidate got votes from every precinct in this town," Hill said. "This will be about issues, that's what people care about."
Issues are what Johnson said he would also focus on in the run-off election."
"I feel very fortunate to be in the run-off. This has been an election against distinguishes opponents; people who are well respected and are very capable of being mayor of Winnsboro," said Johnson, who watched results come in at the Franklin Parish Courthouse.
There are 2,933 registered voters in Winnsboro, the majority of them are black Democrats. The Democratic Party in the city is comprised of 2,104 voters, 1,598 of them are black and 506 are white.
There are 360 white Republican voters and 58 black Republican voters in Winnsboro.
The racial makeup of the city was about 40 percent white and 59 percent black, with other races making up about one percent of the population, according to the last U.S. Census.
Even though voters will still have to choose who will ultimately be Winnsboro's mayor, other important offices and issues for the city were decided in Saturday's election.
Lester Thomas Jr. was able to keep his job as police chief by besting Bruce McCarthy by a wide margin. Thomas received 67 percent of ballot's cast, 1,077 votes, over McCarthy, who got 527 votes.
"I feel really great. I'm humbled by the support. I would like to thank my friends, family and supporters for giving me a second opportunity to serve as chief of police," Thomas said, while celebrating his victory at an election party at Citizens Progressive Bank.
John "Sonny" Dumas bested challenger Deborah Davidson and was able to continue serving District 2 on the Winnsboro Board of Aldermen. Dumas got 55 percent of ballots cast, 158 votes, over Davidson, who received 130 votes.