Midville candidate’s bid for mayor challenged

As the election approaches next Tuesday, a citizen has challenged Midville mayoral candidate Wallace Lemons’ Burke County voter registration status.

According to Board of Elections Director Beau Gunn, the department received a challenge letter that is being reviewed by attorney Adam Nelson. Nelson will decide if the challenge letter meets the specification of state code, requiring it to be in writing and specifying the grounds for the challenge. Nelson will determine if grounds exist.

“If it is a qualified challenge letter then the board will set a hearing within 10 days and all parties will be able to present their case to the Board of Elections,” Gunn said Monday and pointed out that a decision in the citizen’s favor could void the election results if Lemons wins the bid for mayor.“It is my understanding that he would not be qualified to hold that office if he is not a Midville registered voter.”

Gunn said he anticipated Nelson’s decision before the end of the week.

“There have been several calls and emails from concerned citizens in the city of Midville,” Gunn said. “But one person submitted a challenge letter.”

Lemons files homestead exemption for tax purposes in Laurens County, where he and his wife own a home. However, Lemons is registered to vote in Burke County and stays in a camper in Midville. The city’s charter requires that candidates have been residents for at least one year and be eligible to vote in the municipal elections.

In an email Tuesday, Elections Supervisor Fran Watson said the city is continuing to allow Lemons to run.

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