Stanly commissioners to ask state legislature for change in election cycle

The election cycle for Stanly County’s Board of Commissioners and School Board took a step forward at a recent meeting of the commissioners.

With a unanimous 7-0 vote, commissioners approved a resolution which expressed the board’s desire to move the elections of both governing bodies from a 5-2 election cycle, with five seats up every four years and two seats two years later, to a 4-3 alignment.

In terms of the commissioners, one of the at-large seats for the 2026 primary and general election would be a two-year term, then four seats would be up for election two years later.

The school board would also have an at-large seat be for a two-year term in the 2024 primary and election, with four seats available in 2026.

In the agenda packet for the meeting was a letter from Stanly County Schools Superintendent Dr. Jarrod Dennis showing support of the changes.

North Carolina’s General Assembly in the 2023-24 legislative session would be the body responsible for making the change.

County Manager Andy Lucas said county staff and commissioners have been researching the proposed changes for a couple of years.

Lucas said the goal of the change “is to create a little more continuity in terms of strategic planning and capital planning so you don’t have a super majority leaving the board every four years.”

Chairman Tommy Jordan said it helps to “balance out the knowledge transfer on the electoral process.” He noted with the current 5-2 model, “80 percent of your board could be replaced by freshmen overnight. This preserves a little transfer of knowledge.”

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