Category: 2022 Jefferson County Elections

Tyson Pushes for Saturday Absentee Voting, Commissioners Demur

Sheila Tyson was determined to have her say.

The Jefferson County commissioner whose resolution to open the courthouse for absentee Saturday voting declared that commissioners who voted against the matter going onto today’s agenda were wrong to not open the courthouse.

Arguing for in-person absentee voting on two Saturdays in October, Tyson said the underlying problem is voter suppression.

“Voter suppression is rampant here in the state of Alabama because that’s the only reason I can see why these doors are not open,” she said. Read more.

JeffCo Probate Judge: Tightened Security Will Delay Voting Returns in the Primaries

UPDATED — Jefferson County’s chief election official is warning that a new voting security measure will delay returns from the May 24 primary elections.

Probate Judge James Naftel said Friday that county officials have worked with Secretary of State officials to find a way to expedite returns.

At issue is a new security measure imposed by Secretary of State John Merrill that moves all precinct returns to central computers provided by his office. These two computers cannot be connected to a network and therefore cannot communicate with each other, so there will not be any results released until all precincts have reported and all results are in, Naftel said. Read more.

Second Verse Same as the First: Four of Five JeffCo Commissioners Have No Known Election Challengers

The next Jefferson County Commission will look very much like the current one as four of the sitting five commissioners have no challenger in the upcoming primary or the general election.

Qualifying for the May 24 party primary elections concluded Friday with four of the five incumbents facing no opposition. District 2 Commissioner Sheila Tyson was the lone exception; Steve Small qualified to face her in the Democratic primary.

None of the commission seats has a qualifier from the other party in November’s general election.

Barring a successful independent or third-party challenge, Republicans Jimmie Stephens (District 3), Joe Knight (District 4) and Steve Ammons (District 5) and Democrat Lashunda Scales (District 1) will remain in office another four years. Stephens and Knight were initially elected in 2010. Scales, Ammons and Tyson were first elected to the commission in 2018.

Commissioners questioned Tuesday said the lack of challengers is an endorsement of the work they’ve done.

“It says that all five commissioners – not just four – all five commissioners have been working for the betterment of their communities,” said Stephens, the commission president. “We all run in districts, and everyone within those districts are extremely satisfied. They did not see a need to change.

“That means that we as a commission are working together to get things done to improve the quality of life for our citizens in Jefferson County,” he continued. “That is indeed what we were elected to do.” Read more.

Candidates, On Your Marks

Candidates have lined up under the Republican and Democratic flags to run for their party nominations for a slate of offices, from U.S. Senate to governor to Jefferson County Commission.

Friday was the deadline for candidates to file papers to run in the primary election, which will be May 24, leading up to the Nov. 8 general election.

In Jefferson County alone, Democratic voters will have more than 80 candidates to choose from, and Republicans will have more than 60.

That doesn’t count candidates running for the U.S. House of Representatives. That qualifying deadline has been extended while the courts determine whether the redrawn House districts approved after the 2020 census are constitutional. A three-judge federal court panel ruled that they were not and told the state to redraw them, but the state has appealed that ruling to the U.S.

For lists of candidates running in each primary, read more.

Pettway Announces Reelection Run for JeffCo Sheriff

Jefferson County Sheriff Mark Pettway has announced he’s running for reelection to a second term.

Speaking Sunday to a room of supporters and followed up by a band playing a campaign song with the chorus, “If he did it before, he can do it again,” Pettway talked about his accomplishments during his first term and how he would continue with the same priorities if he won reelection. Read more.