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Phillips sworn in for remainder of term
Phillips sworn in pic
Newly-elected City Councilman Caleb Phillips is sworn in for the remainder of a vacated term by City Attorney Dana Miles during Mondays regular called meeting.

While there was no official election for the city, City Councilman Caleb Phillips was sworn in during the city of Dawsonville's regular called meeting.

Phillips was the only qualifying candidate during the March special election to fill the seat vacated by former councilman Chris Gaines following his move out of city limits.

"Pursuant to O.C.G.A. [section] 21-2-291, notice is hereby given that the City of Dawsonville, Municipal Special Election scheduled for March 17, 2015, is canceled," said Dawson County Election Superintendent Glenda Ferguson in an advertisement placed in local news media.

According to section of Georgia law for dealing with unopposed candidates, "in the event there is no opposed candidate in a precinct in a special or general election, no special or general election shall be held in such precinct unless a write-in candidate has qualified as provided by law or unless there are issues to be submitted to the electorate.

"The candidate will be assumed to have voted for him or herself, making the sole runner the winner."

"This [decision] is required by state law," said City Attorney Dana Miles. "There will be another election for this same position in November 2015 for a new term to begin Jan. 1, 2016."

Phillips previously served on the council as an appointed member when he was selected to fill a seat left open by current-mayor James Grogan and former city councilman Calvin Byrd when both stepped down to run for mayor upon the death of former Mayor Joe Lane Cox.

"I've enjoyed serving on the council both times I was appointed," Phillips said. "A lot of people encouraged me to run, so I did. As a resident of the city, what happens here is important to me, so I want to do what I can to make it a better place."

Phillips will hold this seat for the remainder of Gaines' elected term, where he says he plans to run again in the November 2015 election.