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Newspaper to host stump debate
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Dawson County citizens will soon have one last chance to ask questions of candidates running for Commissioner Gary Pichons District 1 seat.

On Wednesday, May 14, from 6-7 p.m. at the Peach Brandy Cottage in downtown Dawsonville, the Dawson News & Advertiser will host its first candidates forum since Publisher Kimberly Boim came on board in 2011.

We are responding to our readers whove shared with us they need more information about candidates to make an informed decision, Boim said. Weve been covering politics in Dawson County for 127 years, and we felt like it was time to reconnect voters and candidates. Smart people who are destined to serve our community need to be able to think on their feet. Weve given them an opportunity to shine.

Candidates Kevin Ellison, Sharon Fausett and Corey Gutherie have agreed to stand atop a large tree stump and to address the audience directly.

The format will be structured, and citizens will be able to ask their questions, Boim said. The candidates live in Dawson County. They all have many friends here, and theyre as much a part of the community as anyone.

Dawson County Elections Board Chair Glenda Ferguson said early voting started Monday.

So far, 47 people voted early in person, and 33 (of 72) have returned absentee ballots, she said.

There are 12,865 active, registered voters in Dawson County who are eligible to vote in the upcoming May 20 primary.

In 2010, a little over 35 percent of people voted (in the primary), Ferguson said. In 2012, it was about 40 percent. For a good turnout, Id love to see at least 50 percent. Everyone can exercise their right to vote and to participate in our democratic process. Voice your opinion, and vote.

Early voting is being held through May 16, Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.- 4 p.m. The elections office is located at 96 Academy Ave., Dawsonville, 706-344-3640. Peach Brandy Cottage is located 1/4 mile south of downtown Dawsonville at 3 Shepherds Lane.