On Tuesday, voters will go to the polls to pick the Republican nominee for the next Horry County school board chairperson.
Here are six things to know before you go vote.
Who are the candidates?
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Ken Richardson is a current Horry-Georgetown Technical College area commissioner, and former commission chair. He’s also the former owner of car dealership Fowler Motors.
Janice Morreale is a District 5 school board member, and a paralegal with Nelson Mullins Riley and Scarborough.
Pat Milley is a retired teacher.
Why is there an election?
The late Horry County school board Chair Joe DeFeo passed away on May 3 from a heart attack. He was 65 years old and still had two years left on his term as board chair. The election will fill the seat he left behind. District 10 board member and Vice-Chair Neil James is serving as interim chair until the new chairperson assumes the seat in January of 2019.
What if there’s a runoff?
If one candidate doesn’t receive more than 50 percent of the vote — a possibility because there are three candidates running — a runoff between the top two candidates will be held on July 31, according to Horry County Election Commission Director Sandy Martin.
Where do the candidates stand on the issues?
None of the candidates said they wanted to raise taxes while the penny sales tax is in place, and none said they support arming teachers.
On drug testing students, Richardson said he was on the fence about testing students with privileges such as parking on campus or playing sports, while Morreale said was in favor of it. Milley said she was in favor of drug-testing students as long as the administration believes a student is using.
On school security, Richardson said he was in favor of putting police officers back into schools in unincorporated Horry County. Morreale said she thought the private security firm was doing a good job, and Milley said either private security or police were adequate.
Who paid for the campaigns?
Richardson, a former business owner, racked up most of his campaign donations from local businesses and a loan from himself.
Morreale, a paralegal and school board member, racked up support from local attorneys, and few people in the school district.
Most of Milley’s donors were acquaintances, and one came from a former school board member.
Who is the Democratic challenger?
The lone Democrat who will challenge the Republican candidate in November is Heather Johnson. Johnson is a business owner and former middle school teacher who most recently taught at Aynor Middle School.
Christian Boschult, 843-626-0218, @TSN_Christian