July 20, 2013
Six candidates are now vying for three Town of Elkin Board of Commissioner seats, according to the Surry County Board of Elections.
The municipal election is for a four-year term.
The candidates are: Cicely McCulloch of W. Main Street, Terry Kennedy of Westover Drive, James Ipock of N. Bridge Street, Bob Norton of Gwyn Avenue, Jeffrey C. Eidson of Ivy Circle, and Charles Bellia of Ivy Circle.
Cicely McCulloch and Terry Kennedy are incumbents seeking re-election.
Taxes and fees are a main proponent on why James Ipock is running for office, he said. With Elkin pivoting off a new budget that raised property taxes by 10 percent and increased water rates, the candidate said change was necessary.
“Vote your pocketbooks and say enough is enough already. We can do things better and make smarter decisions,” said Ipock, who has never ran for public office before. Ipock indicated that the Town should control its wasteful spending practices and dedicate resources to offset fees that impact the most vulnerable.
Norton is a past president and director of the Lion’s Club, served nine years on the Elkin Planning Board as co-chair, volunteers for the Boy Scouts, and is a deacon with the First Baptist Church.
“I never thought I would run. I have heard those voices of people expressing to me that I should run,” said Norton.
On the budget, Norton indicated that he would’ve voted against it.
“We have not been able to grasp the impact of the loss of industry. We lost the mill. We lost the furniture factory. It’s a real dent in revenue, but I think they have to understand that Elkin is an aging population and you can’t fix your problems on their income,” said Norton.
Newcomer Charles Bellia said he would’ve voted for the budget.
“I am not a liberal or conservative. I do believe that sometimes you have to make adjustments to keep the services you want and need for your Town,” said Bellia.
Bellia has served on the church council for the First United Methodist Church. He runs his own company - The Stereo Shop - an electronics store out of Winston-Salem.
Jeffrey Eidson of G & B Energy did not return The Tribune’s calls seeking a comment, as of press time.
As reported in an earlier edition by The Tribune, Elkin Commissioner Joe Walker has opted not to seek re-election. He was on Council for 10 years.
Also on the Elkin Board of Commissioners are J.L. Lowe, Jr., and Dr. Skip Whitman. Lowe and Whitman’s term expires in 2015.
The Elkin election is shaping up to be a hot spot for Surry County. The only other contested municipal election is in Mount Airy with Commissioner Steve Yokeley seeking another four years, but Jimmy D. Mitchell and Jerry Byrd opting to weigh into voters decisions.
Reach Anthony Gonzalez at 336-835-1513 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.