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School Board: Panel orders new election in District 6

By Jason Lesley
Coastal Observer

The Georgetown County Board of Elections and Registration voted today to uphold a protest by Peggy Wheeler-Cribb and ordered a new election for the Georgetown County School Board’s District 6 seat.

“Justice was done,” said Wheeler-Cribb after the board voted 8-1 in her favor.

Richard Kerr was certified as the winner of the race by 22 votes last week. Board member Billy Altman testified that some voters in the Murrells Inlet 2 precinct were given the wrong ballot. “I live in that precinct,” he said, “and some of my neighbors were getting a different ballot than I got,” he said.

Bob Moran, attorney for Wheeler-Cribb, asked Altman if anybody knew how many incorrect ballots were issued.

No, Altman said.

Moran reminded him that he had reported to the board last week that as many as 240 may have been given a District 1 school board ballot even though they live in District 6. Altman said that he counted 270 voters who could have received the wrong ballot and that 30 or 40 were corrected by poll workers.

“We know there was a mistake,” Moran said during his summation.

Board members lauded Altman’s efforts to bring the ballot error to light. Chairman Dean Smith called Altman’s efforts “heroic.”

Kerr said he was disappointed with the board’s decision. “I thought I fairly won the election,” he said. There was no proof that voters were disenfranchised.”

Kerr said he had not decided whether to appeal the board’s decision to the state Election Commission. He has until next Monday at noon to file an appeal.

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