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Mayor, council seeking re-election
All six qualify to run again
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Forsyth County News

The longtime mayor of Cumming has decided to seek another term.

H. Ford Gravitt qualified for re-election Wednesday, said City Clerk Jeff Honea.

Gravitt, who has held the post since 1970, joins the five city councilman, all of whom qualified Monday for the Nov. 8 election.

Gravitt had previously said the 2007 bid would be his last. However, he changed his mind due to a large number of ongoing municipal projects.

"We have a lot of unfinished business in the city right now," he said Thursday.

Gravitt cited such projects as a new satellite campus of North Georgia College & State University and a National Guard Armory, both of which are planned for a site on Pilgrim Mill Road near the recently opened Cumming Aquatic Center.

The mayor also noted several major road projects — including the widening of Buford Dam Road and improvements at Mary Alice Park Road and Hwy. 9 — that he would like to see completed while in office.

"These are some of the projects that we’ve entered into that we all want to work on and complete," he said.

All five incumbent councilmen — Quincy Holton, Lewis Ledbetter, Ralph Perry, John D. Pugh and Rupert Sexton — have also signed up to seek another term.

The qualifying period continues through 4:30 this afternoon on the second floor of city hall.

As of Thursday, none of the six incumbents had drawn a challenger. Four years ago, there were no contested races.

City leadership has remained unchanged since 1993. Some members, including Gravitt who was formerly a councilman, have held office since the late 1960s.

The Nov. 8 election will be the first since the city has adopted a new staggering policy.

Previously, all positions were four-year terms. As a result of the change, however, the mayor and council Posts 1 and 2 are two-year-terms this election.

Post 1 is currently held by Sexton, while Holton has Post 2.

Those positions will come up again in 2013 and every four years thereafter.

The terms of Posts 3, 4 and 5 — currently held by Ledbetter, Perry and Pugh — will be for four years.

Honea said anyone interested in qualifying must be at least 21 years old, a registered voter and have lived in the city limits for at least a year prior to the election.

Qualifying fee to run for city council is $180 and for mayor is $360.