Billingsley beats Stewart

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By Sarrah Peters/News Editor

Billy Billingsley, Sr. won the District 5 runoff election on Tuesday, Oct. 7 against current City of Gadsden councilman Bill Stewart. Stewart has held the position for four terms. 

Billingsley won with 53.6 percent of the votes, which totaled 308 votes. Stewart received 266 votes. 

The election on Aug. 26 had both Billingsley and Stewart with 41 percent, with Billingsley receiving 373 votes and Stewart receiving 366 votes, before all absentee ballots were counted. 

“I am very happy with the results,” said Billingsley. “Everyone in the district will get a voice.”

“I wish the new administration all the luck in the world,” said Stewart at the City Council meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 8 after thanking his supporters. “I hope he does a good job, and I’m sure he will.”

Voter turnout at the Aug. 26 election was low, but the runoff election was even worse. Stewart joked at the city council meeting that a lot of people had missed the election. Turnout fell from 36 percent to 22 percent. The decrease in voter participation locally and nationally is a growing problem, fueled by public disinterest in politics. 

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