West Columbia elects new council member, Gaston incumbents win write-in campaigns

Posted 1/19/23

Voting has ended for council seats in two Lexington County municipalities.

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West Columbia elects new council member, Gaston incumbents win write-in campaigns


Elections were held this week for council seats in two Lexington County municipalities.

On Jan. 17, Gaston held a regularly scheduled election for two Town Council seats and West Columbia held a special election to fill the District 3 City Council seat vacated in August by Casey Hallman, who is moving away from the city.

In Gaston, Charles Sharpe and Jimmy Cox won re-election in their write-in campaigns, according to election results certified Jan. 19,  receiving 14 and 16 votes respectively. Sharpe was running to secure a second term, while Cox was after his third.

Five other candidates received between one and two write-in votes.

In West Columbia, long-time resident, and small business owner George Crowe  secured the District 3 council seat with 146 votes. Crowe will serve the remainder of Hallman’s vacated term, set to expire in November 2025.

“I love our city and I want to make our city a great place to live and work and play and I just want to continue to see the growth of West Columbia,” he said.

In a Facebook post Crowe thanked voters for electing him saying that he looks forward to serving them and the city.

Ashley Johnson, a 34-year-old realtor and the youngest of the three candidates, came close to Crowe with 142 votes.

A recount was ultimately unnecessary to certify the results Thursday. While small, the margin between Crowe and Johnson was larger than the 1% threshold under which a recount is required under state law.

Former West Columbia mayor Bobby Horton received 35 votes.

Crowe said he plans to be a strong advocate for the Carolina Crossroads project to reshape the interstate interchange commonly referred to as “Malfunction Junction,” telling the Chronicle that its completion would be viewed as a success in the district.

“I want to build trust and integrity in our city council. I will be straightforward and transparent,” he said. “This is how I’ve done business for many years and is how I think public servants should act. I also think public servants should work for the public good and always try to keep the cost to taxpayers as low as possible.”

The Chronicle was unable to reach the other Gaston and West Columbia candidates for comment.


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