PEMBROKE — Raymond Cummings, the second longest serving member of the Robeson County Board of Elections, won a sixth term representing District 5 on Tuesday night by defeating political newcomer Lynn Locklear by 631 votes.
Cummings, a Democrat first elected to the board in 1996, won re-election by carrying 57.27 percent of votes cast. Cummings won seven precincts that voted in the race, with Locklear carrying three.
State Board of Elections’ results show Cummings gained a lead during early voting, winning 1,058 one-stop votes to Locklear’s 725.
Cummings has received criticism, including from this newspaper, because his term on the board coincided with the times the commissioners’ pay and benefits rose to among the best in North Carolina. Cummings has been unapologetic when asked about that compensation in perhaps the poorest county in the state.
He has also fallen under criticism as chairman of the board for the Department of Social Services, where he has used the position to control jobs. Earlier this year, he resigned from the board when the commissioners continued to deadlock on effort to reappoint him to the board of replace him.
The only commissioner who has served longer than Cummings is Noah Woods, who was first elected to the board in 1990.