Home Local News Guinn to challenge Bayless in Hamlet mayoral race

Guinn to challenge Bayless in Hamlet mayoral race

Political experts say the 2020 election will be competitive.
RO file photo

A challenger has entered the Hamlet mayoral race.

Amy Guinn went to the Richmond County Board of Elections on Friday to challenge sitting Mayor Bill Bayless.

“I would like to see (the) city council pay more attention and appreciation to the businesses currently downtown and (offer) incentives to bring new businesses to our town,” Guinn told the RO via Facebook message on Friday.

Guinn says she would also like to “(c)ontinue support to the city employees so they can be effective in their jobs and help direct funds the city is receiving through grants to beautify downtown.”

While not a native of the Seaboard City, Guinn’s husband, Chad, is and they moved from Atlanta, Georgia, 20 years ago.

Bayless filed on opening day July 7, as did council members Maurice Stuart, Abbie Covington and Oscar Sellers. Ray Mills filed to run for the Hamlet City Council on July 10.

Guinn was the only candidate to file on Friday, according to Elections Director Shannon Hearne.

In Rockingham, Mayor John Hutchinson remains unchallenged. 

Three seats on the city council — held by Bennett Deane, Gene Willard and Steve Morris — are up for reelection. Deane and Willard both filed on July 7. 

Morris has not yet filed, but Holly Littlefiled Howe filed to run for a seat on July 10.

Two of the three incumbents in Ellerbe, Mayor Brenda Capel and Councilman Jeremy McKenzie, have filed, but John Sears Jr. has not.


Likewise, Dobbins Heights Mayor Antonio Blue and Councilwoman Ravonna Magee have filed, however Councilwoman Mary Ann Gibson has yet to do so.

So far, no candidates — incumbents or challengers — have filed for election in Hoffman or Norman.

Filing fees are $10 for races in Rockingham, Hamlet and Ellerbe; and $5 for Dobbins Heights, Hoffman and Norman.

Filing ends at noon July 21.

(Disclosure: Guinn was a contributor to the RO from April 2018-December 2019 and McKenzie made appearances on the RO Sports Show.)

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