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Dunbar officials hoping for better election turnout

By Bridget May

DUNBAR, W.Va. -- Dunbar officials hope turnout in today's general election will be better than the dismal figures reported in the primaries.

Of the town's 5,445 registered voters, only 591 cast ballots in the May primary. That's about 11 percent.

The turnout likely suffered because the primaries were held on Easter Weekend, officials have said.

City Clerk Ross Harrison told council members at Monday's regular meeting that 258 people participated in early voting. He hoped that was a good sign that turnout would improve.

Fourth Ward Councilman Everett Sullivan jokingly warned residents, "If you don't vote, you don't have any reason to gripe."

In the race for mayor, Democrat Terry Greenlee will face Republican Michael Hall. Incumbent Mayor Jack Yeager, a Democrat, has decided not to seek reelection.

Harrison, a Republican, faces Democrat Connie Fulknier in the race for city clerk.

Dunbar is divided into four wards with two council members representing each one.

Democrats Pam Reynolds and incumbent R.J. "Rick" Fields and Republican Steve Arnott are running in the First Ward race.

Democrats Doug Fleshman and Dana K. Hayes and incumbent Republican Harold Craigo are running in the Second Ward Race.

Incumbent Democrat Tom Bailey and Republican Connie Thompson are guaranteed seats in the Third Ward race because no other candidates filed.

The same is true in the race for Fourth Ward, where only Sullivan and fellow Democrat G.L. Harper are running.

Polls are open 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

In other business, Fire Chief Butch Ellis announced that 16 new disaster sirens would be tested on the fourth Wednesday of each month at noon.

"Not only does it siren, it will give you an audible warning of what is going on after the initial alert," Ellis said about the new systems.

Ellis went on to say that Metro and county coordinators are looking for feedback from residents. They want to know if residents can hear the siren and if they can understand the message that follows.

Ellis urged residents to contact him after the next test with their feedback.

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