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What’s on the ballot?


What voters will decide on Nov. 8

Election season, which will see Bossier residents decide on a slew of positions both in parish towns and national offices, has arrived.

Early voting runs now through Nov. 1 from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day except for Sunday.

On Election Day, Nov. 8, polls are open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. If you are in line by 8 p.m. you will be allowed to vote.

You can find your voting location at the secretary of state’s website by searching by voter on https://voterportal.sos.la.gov/.

  • Bring one of the following with you to vote:
    • A Louisiana driver’s license or special ID card
    • Another generally recognized picture ID card that contains your name and signature
    If you don’t have any of the above IDs, you can complete a sworn statement claiming that with your date of birth and your mother’s maiden name.

If you registered to vote in Louisiana for the first time; submitted your voter registration application by mail; and you didn’t provide your Louisiana driver’s license or special ID number, or the last 4 digits of your Social Security number when you registered to vote, also bring a photo ID, utility bill, bank statement, or other government document that shows your name and address.

What will the people of Bossier Parish be deciding on?

Locally, there are mayor races in Benton, Haughton and Plain Dealing. There are also alderman races in all three towns, police chief/town marshal decisions, and more.

Residents in the Town of Benton will decide between six candidates for the office of mayor — Johnnie Brunson (D); James Friday (R); John “Jr.” Hollis (D); S.G. Horton, Jr. (R); Diane Naron (D); and Ken Shiflett.

Benton residents will also vote on a millage continuation of 4.96 mills for 10 years that will maintain streets in the town.
The town will also pick two new alderman. In District 1, voters will decide on Democrat Jacqueline Neal Carr or Republican Willie Kelly. In District 5, current Mayor Wayne Cathcart is running against Democrat Tommy Hill. Linda Gates, Ronnie Jones, and Donna Moore Wyatt are all running unopposed.

The current police chief, Charles Pilkinton, also failed to incur opposition.

Haughton residents will get a new mayor with Jack Hicks running unopposed.

The town will chose five aldermen from 11 candidates; Democrats Doug Adams, Melba Baker, Doris Grappe, Charlene Smith, and Elbert Winfield; and Republicans Kim Gaspard, Jo Anne Harnage Keith, Deborah Killion, Martha McGee, Jonathan Phillips, and Phillip Smith.

The town will also decide on a new police chief as current Chief Rodney Farrington is retiring. Voters will pick between Republicans Wayne Berry and Todd Gibson and Democrat Adrian Ruffin.

Plain Dealing will be selecting a new mayor with Donna Canales and Republican David Smith up for election.

The town will pick a Marshal from Tim Cannon and incumbent Ronnie Murray.

All town alderman are running unopposed.

Bossier Parish residents will have two millages to vote on.

The first is a “Parishwide Health Units Proposition” that would renew a .82 mills property tax for 10 years that would go towards equipping and maintaining the services of the parish health units. The second millage would be renewal of a 1.99 mills property tax for 10 years that will go towards building and maintenance of roads and bridges in the parish.

South Bossier residents will have to decided on a Fire District No. 2 Proposition that would levy 13.78 mills property tax for 10 years to go towards “acquiring, improving, operating and maintaining fire protection facilities and equipment in the District.” Voters should also know that this would represent an increase of 2.29 mills that was approved to run from 2007 to 2017.

Meanwhile, some south Bossier residents will also vote on a City of Shreveport renewal of the 1/4% sales tax for Shreveport Police and Fire Departments.

The national elections is headlined by the vote for President, which will see Republican nominee Donald Trump and Michael Pence take on Democrats Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine. Outside of the main two parties is Libertarian Gary Johnson, Green Party candidate Jill Stein, Darrell Castle, Evan McMullin, Laurence Kotlikoff, Tom Hoofing, Princess Jacob, Gloria La Riva, Jerry White, Alyson Kennedy, and Chris Keniston.

Bossier Parish voters will help decide a new U.S. Senator to replace David Vitter, who is not seeking re-election following his failed governor bid. There are 24 nominees on the ballot:

  • Beryl Billiot (no party),
  • U.S. Rep. Charles Boustany (R),
  • Public Service Commissioner and former Louisiana Senator Foster Campbell (D),
  • Joseph Cao (R),
  • Thomas Clements (L),
  • Donald “Crawdaddy” Crawford (R),
  • David Duke (R),
  • Derrick Edwards (D),
  • Caroline Fayard (D),
  • U.S. Rep. John Fleming (R),
  • LeRoy Gillam (L),
  • Troy Hebert (no party),
  • State Treasurer John Kennedy (R),
  • Gary Landrieu (D),
  • Bob Lang Jr. (other),
  • Rob Maness (R),
  • Kaitlin Marone (no party),
  • Charles Marsala (R),
  • Vinny Mendoza (D),
  • Abhay Patel (R),
  • Joshua Pellerin (D),
  • Gregory Taylor Jr. (other),
  • Arden Wells (no party),
  • Peter Williams (D)

To replace Fleming, residents will decide who will represent them in the 4th Congressional District. Candidates are Republicans Trey Baucus, Elbert Guillory, Oliver Jenkins, Rick John, and Mike Johnson; Marshall Jones is the lone Democrat on the ballot; and Mark David Halverson Kenneth Krefft have no party affiliation.

Residents will pick a new judge for the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeal. It will come down to Republicans Jay Caraway and Jeff Cox.

Finally, there are six state constitution amendments on the ballot. You can read a summary of what a “yay” or “nay” vote would mean for all six at the Bossier Press-Tribune website www.bossierpress.com/breaking-down-state-amendments/.

You can find election results from the Secretary of State’s website at https://voterportal.sos.la.gov/.

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Sean Green is managing editor of the Bossier Press-Tribune.


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