By CHARLES OWENS and ANNE ELGIN
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
TAZEWELL, Va. —
Voters in Southwest Virginia will decide a number of county and state races today, including the closely watched gubernatorial contest between Democrat Terry McAuliffe and Republican Ken Cuccinelli.
Polls open at 6 a.m. and close at 7 p.m. across Southwest Virginia.
Area voter registration officials are expecting a moderate voter turnout. In Tazewell County, 224 in-person early absentee ballots were cast, along with 224 in-person absentee ballots, county Registrar Brian Earls said.
“The local races seem to be drawing the most interest,” Earls said. “I expect that to continue (today) with the way absentee ballots have been looking.”
Another 275 absentee ballots were cast in Giles County. And 83 early ballots were reported in Bland County.
“It’s a pretty normal turnout for this type of election,” Bland County Registrar Stacy Grady said.
In Buchanan County, where there will be no county or town races until 2014, a lighter voter turnout was expected for today, county Registrar Vicki Clevinger said.
In Tazewell County, voters will determine county supervisors and school board members today.
In the Southern District, incumbent supervisor and Democrat Mike Hymes is being challenged by Republican Jerry R. Blackburn. In the Southern District school board contest, incumbent board member Randy Conn is being challenged by former Sheriff H.S. Caudill.
In the Western District, incumbent supervisor and Republican John Absher is running unopposed for re-election. In the Western District school board contest, incumbent Steve Davis is being challenged by N. Chris Moir.
In the special Northern District Board of Supervisors contest scheduled to fill the unexpired term of former supervisor Tom Brewster, current board member and Democrat Tom Childress is being challenged by Republican G. “John R.” Roberts Jr.
Voters also will determine a single seat today on the Richlands Town Council. The special election is being held to fill the unexpired Richlands Town Council term of Shea Cook, who resigned earlier this year. Mary Ann Strong is running unopposed for the seat.
In the 3rd Delegate District House race, which includes Tazewell, Bland and Buchanan counties, incumbent Delegate James W. “Will” Morefield, R-Tazewell, is being challenged by Democrat James M. O’Quinn.
In Bland County, voters also will determine county supervisors and school board members today.
In the board of supervisors District 4 race, incumbent Karen Harless Hodock is being challenged by Keith P. Costello and David L. Taylor.
In the District 2 board of supervisors contest, incumbent Lace M. “Nick” Asbury IV is running unopposed for re-election.
In the school board District 4 race, incumbent Anthony T. “Tony” Kennedy is being challenged by Jerri E. Harman.
In the school board District 2 race, incumbent Melinda F. Litton is being challenged by Sandra G. Harman.
Giles County voters will decide local county supervisors, school board, and municipal elections today.
In the Giles County Board of Supervisors contest, two incumbents are vying for two at-large seats. They are Paul W. “Chappy” Baker and Richard K. “Ricky” McCoy.
In the at-large school board contest, three candidates are vying for two seats. They include incumbent J.B. Buckland, Eric G. Gentry, and incumbent Drema K. McMahon.
— Contact Charles Owens at email@example.com