New filing period opens for Tribal Council

By Bob Shiles -

PEMBROKE — Three candidates on Monday filed to be on the ballot for the rescheduled Lumbee Tribal Council election, the first day of a new filing period.

The new filing period is the result of last week’s Lumbee Supreme Court ruling that requires the previous 14 voting districts be used to elect members to the 21-member council rather than the 21 recently created voting districts, which were found unconstitutional. That also delayed the election from Nov. 15 to Nov. 29.

Candidates had already filed and been certified to run in seven of the new districts when the court ruled that the process for drawing the new districts was flawed. Redistricting cannot be done until after the next national census in 2020, the court said.

According to Sheila Beck-Jones, the chairman of the Lumbee Tribe Elections Board, all of the candidates who had filed for the Nov. 15 election were refunded their $250 filing fee. Candidates wishing to file for the Nov. 29 election have until Oct. 14 to do so.

Filing on Monday were District 6 incumbent Larry Townsend and challenger Larry Chavis. District 6 includes North Pembroke and Raft Swamp.

Corbin Eddings filed as a candidate in District 8, which is currently represented by Daniel Jones. That district encompasses Burnt Swamp.

Other districts where seats are up for grabs and their current incumbents are: District 2, Back Swamp, Fairmont and Smyrna, Terry Hunt; District 3, Lumberton and West Howellsville, Al Locklear; District 7, South Pembroke and Union, Jan Lowery; District 12, Alfordsville, Maxton and Scotland County, Areatha Patterson; and District 13, Cumberland County, Lumber Bridge, North St. Pauls and Parkton, William Maiden.

Maiden can’t seek re-election because the Lumbee Constitution prohibits elected officials from serving more than two consecutive three-year terms.

Beck-Jones said that those wishing to file as candidates can do so weekdays through Oct. 14 from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. at the Elections Board office at 707 Union Chapel Road, Suite D, in Pembroke.

By Bob Shiles

Bob Shiles can be reached at 910-416-5165.

Bob Shiles can be reached at 910-416-5165.

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