Jul 28, 2014
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Woodstock-Towne Lake Election Guide

While voters had their say on many races in July, a statewide school choice amendment, a countywide sales tax proposal, one Congressional race and three state legislature races will be on the ballot.

Woodstock-Towne Lake Election Guide

Although the biggest question on the Nov. 6 ballot is who will become the next President of the United States, that doesn't mean voters have no Georgia-centric issues to weigh in on.

The sole issue on the statewide ballot is House Resolution 1162. If this resolution is passed, Georgia's constitution will be amended to allow the state to approve and fund local charter schools.

This so-called "charter school amendment" has been the crux of controversy in Cherokee County. Supporters and detractors of the amendment have spent months discussing the issue.

Recognizing the importance some Cherokee residents place on charter schools, Gov. Nathan Deal chose Cherokee Charter Academy as the location where he signed House Bill 797 back in May.

H.B. 797, which relies on the passage of H.R. 1162 to become effective, will restore the state's charter schools commission after a state Supreme Court decision ruled the body unconstitutional.

 

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However, Cherokee school board members voted 4-2 during an April meeting to endorse a resolution that urges Georgians to reject the amendment, which they fear will take away from local districts. 

A ballot question will ask if voters across the county want to enact a 1% sales tax that will go towards reducing the property tax burden of landowners. At a recent forum to discuss the Homestead Option Salex Tax, Cherokee officials confirmed that 100% of the money received from the HOST would go towards property tax reductions.

Opponents of the plan have asserted that the regressive tax will hurt far more Cherokee residents than it will help, and claim that there is no guarantee that this sales tax will prevent other tax increases.

A second forum is planned for Oct. 4.

Voters in State House District 20, which includes Towne Lake and parts of Woodstock, will also choose their next state representative. Republican Michael Caldwell will face Democratic Challenger Lillian Burnaman in the Nov. 6 election. Caldwell ousted State Rep. Charlice Byrd (R-Woodstock) in the July 31 primary. 

Voters in State House District 46, which includes a very small part of Woodstock and northeastern Cobb counties, will choose between Democratic candidate Kevin "Big Kev" Westphal and incumbent Republican John Carson.

Senate District 56 voters, which also includes parts of Woodstock and north Fulton County, will also go to the polls on Nov. 6 and choose their next state senator. Incumbent Republican John Albers (R-Roswell) will face Democratic challenger Akhtar Sadiq. 

Woodstock resident and Democratic candidate Patrick Thompson will face off against incumbent Republican Congressman Phil Gingrey (R-Marietta) for the 11th Congressional District race. 

Oct. 9 is the last day to register to vote in the Nov. 6 election.

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