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Schulz, Edwards elected to BOC
Melanie Bell elected Probate Judge
ELECITON stan edwards

Nancy Schulz has been reelected to the Newton County Board of Commissioners in District 3, and will be joined on the board by Republican Stan Edwards in District 1.

"I want to thank my voters because we've got a lot to accomplish, a lot to do to work together, and I really want to finish the job," Schulz said. "I also want to thank my volunteers. They got me to the finish line and over the hump. I want to thank my family and my opponents' families, too. They put themselves out there — they're kind of the unsung heroes."
Schulz received 677, or 53.22 percent of the 1,272 ballots cast during Tuesday's primary after the unoficial results came in. Timothy Brown received 36.64 percent, or 466 votes, and Suzette Monk 10.14 percent, or 129 votes.

Schulz said Brown and Monk, her opponents in the Democratic race, worked very hard and she appreciated all the work they did. "I'd like to extend my hand and see how we can work together," she said.

Edwards, a Republican, received 58.09 percent of the 1,897 votes cast, or 1,102 votes, with Nathan Bradley receiving 795 votes, or 41.91 percent.

"I feel grateful," Edwards said. "I had a lot of people that worked hard for me. I appreciate the voters' confidence.

"Nathan Bradley and I had a handshake agreement three months ago, and we both stuck to that agreement with no exceptions. I was proud of how the election was run and humbled to be elected by this district."

Schulz and Edwards were elected outright Tuesday, due to lack of an opponent in the opposing party. The same was true for the race for Probate Court Judge. Melanie Bell was elected Probate Court Judge by Republicans, with 2,755, or 52.76 percent of the 5,222 ballots cast, compared to her opponent Shannon Sneed taking 47.24 percent, or 2,467 of the votes.

"I’m just excited for me and excited for the county," Bell said. "I feel like I’m going to do my best job to fill [retired] Judge [Henry] Baker’s shoes. Obviously I have big shoes to fill, and I’m excited about the opportunity."

Tuesday night brought on two runoffs, one in District 5 between Ronnie Cowan and Jared Rutberg. Cowan received 46.56 percent of the 1,686 ballots cast, or 785 votes, while Rutberg received 39.15 percent, or 677 votes.

“I think we did a good job,” Cowan said. “We anticipated a run off in that I think we did better than I thought we did. I think we did good.”

"I think it was our first step in trying to take our county back as far as new energy and new leadership," Rutberg said. "And come July 26 it's time to take final vote and go and really change the leadership."

Another runoff will be between Phil Johnson, who received 41.97 percent or 1,665 of the 4,054 votes cast, and Marcello Banes, who received 36.41 percent, or 1,476 votes, as the Democratic candidate for county chair.

Runoff elections will be held on Tuesday, July 26. In Georgia, a runoff election is required if no candidate takes over a majority of the vote in a primary election.

Aaron Varner is the Republican candidate for chair after defeating Levie Maddox Tuesday with 65.14 percent of the vote. The total number of votes cast for the Republican chair was 5,123, with Varner garnering 3,337.

“I appreciate all the support that I had and thank people showing confidence in me,” Varner said. “We’ll see how it goes come November.”

Click here for results of Tuesday night.


Bryan Fazio contributed to this report.