|Gallatin Aldermen face challengers|
|Thursday, August 16, 2012|
The Sumner Election Commission certified the results of the Aug. 2 County General, State Judicial, and state and federal office primary elections Tuesday.Administrator of Elections Lori Atchley reported on the test use of new voting equipment and getting the game plan ready for the much larger November 6 election with a presidential general race at the top of the ticket.
The filing deadline to turn in petitions to run in a municipal election on the November ballot passed at noon Thursday. Those whose petitions qualified them to run have until noon next Thursday to withdraw or their names will appear on the ballot.
There are the only three elections set for Gallatin this year and all three incumbents had challengers file against them as of the noon Thursday deadine. Gallatin Alderman at Large Tommy Garrott had earlier returned his petition and as of now faces the prospect of a three-way contest with well-connected businessman Taylor Tomkins Condra and Julie Brackenberry.
Brackenberry picked up petitions to run for alderman Tuesday and returned her at-large petition Thursday. Brackenberry works as a freelance writer and graphic designer and in public relations. Her web site touts: “Julie is the former publisher of MainStreet Media LLC for The Gallatin Newspaper, located on the Square in Gallatin. During her tenure she had the opportunity to create, develop and start the newest member of the MainStreet Media LLC family, The Hendersonville Standard, located in Hendersonville, TN.”
Former Gallatin Police Chief John Tisdale did not file to run, having reportedly sold his house and moved out of the area after picking up papers in May. Charles Timothy Durham picked up a petition Aug. 6 for the at-large seat but did not return it.
The excitement certainly picked up in the two ward elections after challengers filed for both seats on the very last day to do so. In Ward 1, Alderman Anne Kemp previously qualified to seek re-election. Kemp won a three-way race in November 2008 with 970 votes or 50.49 percent.
This time Kemp now faces Steve Sudbury who picked up a petition Thursday morning and returned it to qualify before the noon deadline the same day. Sudbury is no newcomer to politics and does not mind mixing it up, having served as a county commissioner before seeking the County Executive position in 2008 as the Democratic nominee. County Executive Anthony Holt won that race as the Republican nominee. Sudbury currently is manager/administrator of the Sumner County Regional Airport Authority.
Sudbury is Garrott’s son-in-law and took over majority control of GCP, Inc. in 1988 according to its web site . Garrott has been at loggerheads over the budget with Mayor Jo Ann Graves. Currently, Garrott comes up one vote short of a mayoral veto override of five votes.
In Ward 2, interim Alderman Steve Camp previously qualified to run for a full term. Camp was elected by City Council in November to fill out the unexpired term of a vacancy following the resignation of Dale Bennett. He now faces businessman Jamie Carfi who was one of five applicants who sought the interim appointment last fall.
Camp ran for the seat in November 2008 and lost by 28 votes, pulling in 531 votes or 48.45 percent against Bennett who pulled in 559 or 51 percent.In November 2004, Camp pulled in 477 to Bennett’s 561.
In November, Carfi told the Gallatin City Council that he could squeeze every bit of copper out of a dollar. Carfi indicated he had held a real estate license and a general contractor license.
Among other interests, Carfi stated that he operated mobile phone stores in Gallatin and Rivergate. Online information references JR Wireless, LLC and Jstar Wireless, LLC, formerly known as JaStar, LLC. Secretary of State records list both LLCs as currently inactive.
Voters will be learning more about all candidates as Election Day draws near and brings with it the voter education process as all sides bring it on to vet those who wish to hold public office.
By Jesse Hughes