By Ruben Lowman
After the close of the filing period for candidates, Horry County voters now know who will be on the ballot when primaries come around in a few months. Several local races will see challenges to the incumbents who currently hold office, mostly on the Horry County Council and Board of Education.
County residents who wished to run for election had until noon on March 30 to file their candidacy, with primaries coming up on June 14 and the general election held on Nov. 4. With the filing period officially closing last week, county residents now have the opportunity to see who will be on the ballot.
For Horry County Council, several local races will be on the ballot in June.
The District 1 seat, which includes North Myrtle Beach, Little River and Longs, sees longtime incumbent Harold Worley face a challenge from Jenna Dukes.
For the District 2 seat, which includes Briarcliffe Acres and the Arcadian Shores area, incumbent Bill Howard will face Dean Richardson.
Incumbent Johnny Gardner will see three challengers in the race for Horry County Council Chairman. Former county chairman Mark Lazarus, Little River resident Katrina Morrison and current District 8 councilmember Johnny Vaught are the three names that will be on the ballot alongside Gardner in the primary.
Term lengths for county councilmembers and chairman are four years.
Primaries for seats on the Horry County Board of Education will also see several local races.
For chairman, incumbent Ken Richardson filed to run in the 7th Congressional District, an office Rep. Tom Rice currently holds.
Richardson’s open seat as chair will see challenges from current District 4 board member David Cox, current District 6 board member Helen Smith and Darrell Ricketts.
The District 2 seat will see incumbent Sherrie Todd face Debbie Edmonds.
For the District 10 seat, which includes Green Sea and communities around the Loris area, incumbent Neil James will be running for re-election against David Warner.
The District 1 seat that was previously held by W. Russell Freeman will see David Koch run unopposed.
In other Horry County seats that were up for re-election, races for solicitor and probate judge saw only one candidate file for each office, which will see them run unopposed on the ballot.
Jimmy Richardson, current 15th Judicial Circuit Solicitor, will be unopposed on the ballot for the seat, and Chief Associate Probate Judge Allen Beverly will also run unopposed for the position of Probate Judge.
Former Probate Judge Kathy Ward announced she would be retiring and wouldn’t be running for re-election after forty years serving in the Probate Office.
Several offices in the state House of Representatives will see local elected officials run unopposed and retain their seats for another terms.
The District 104 seat, which includes North Myrtle Beach and Little River, will see incumbent Rep. William Bailey retain his seat and District 105, which includes Loris and the surrounding communities, will see incumbent Rep. Kevin Hardee remain in office for another term. District 56, which includes Wampee and parts of Longs, will see incumbent Tim McGinnis retain his seat.
Horry County will now have 11 representatives in the state house after it was awarded District 61, which will be mostly off of Highway 501 in Conway and Myrtle Beach, as a result of population growth and redistricting.
Local primaries will be held on June 14 and the general election will be on Nov. 4.