By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great local journalism.
Election 2021: Brumbalow re-elected, E-SPLOST ahead as first results come in
Troy Brumbalow 2021 WEB.jpg
City of Cumming Council members Jason Evans, Chad Crane, Mayor Troy Brumbalow and council members Christopher Light and Joey Cochran wait for election results on Tuesday, Nov. 2. - photo by Jeremy Coleman

City of Cumming Mayor Troy Brumbalow is headed to a second term and a 1-cent sales tax for education appears likely as the first results of Tuesday’s election rolled in.

According to information from the Forsyth County Department of Voter Registrations and Elections, as of about 10 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 2, Brumbalow had received 683 votes, about 77% of the 887 ballots cast in the race, to challenger William Stone’s 204 votes, 23%.

Nearly 25%, 889 votes, of the city’s 3,618 registered voters cast a ballot in the election.

Councilmen Chad Crane, Post 1, and Jason Evans, Post 2, were also re-elected on Tuesday after neither drew a challenger. Both were elected alongside Brumbalow in 2017.

The first batch of results released included ballots cast advance in-person, absentee by mail, and for the 07-Cumming, 01-Big Creek, 03-Browns Bridge, 05-Coal Mountain and 08-Mashburn precincts.

At that time, with 6,660 ballots counted, voters had voted yes 4,641 times in the county-wide referendum for a proposed Educational Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax, or E-SPLOST, compared with 2,009 votes against the resolution, which asks that the community reimpose the 1% sales tax on purchases to pay for capital projects within Forsyth County Schools.

Voters in the county have approved five other E-SPLOST referendums in the past, the most recent being in 2016. With E-SPLOST V ending in June 2022, the new referendum for E-SPLOST VI gives voters the chance to continue with the sales tax for the next five years.

E-SPLOST is used to pay for capital projects within Forsyth County Schools. This is unlike SPLOST collected by the county or city, which is used for projects such as traffic lights, roads and more.

A new elementary school to serve as a replacement for Midway Elementary is among the list of capital projects. The school has faced overcrowding issues for several years due to a small student capacity, and because of its location near Highway 9, the school cannot be expanded.

Planned for a lot near Denmark High School, the replacement school is expected to cost $38 million for the building and furniture.

Aside from the Midway replacement, most of the other projects include upgrades, repairs and refreshers for older schools and equipment in the district. This includes furniture, technology, facilities and other supplies that need to be repaired or replaced in district schools and buildings.

The overall total cost of these projects is projected to be more than $264.7 million.

The E-SPLOST, if approved, would also be used to pay $50,000 in bond payments taken out after voters approved the school district’s latest bond in 2018, which helped to fund the new facilities and schools opening for the school year starting in August such as East Forsyth High and Hendricks Middle schools.

When voters approved of the bond in 2018, they also agreed to pay the remaining $50,000 in bond payments out of E-SPLOST VI. If it is not approved, school officials said property taxes may need to be reevaluated to cover the costs of the projects, many of which are nearly completed.