Thursday, November 26, 2015
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The Tunica Times • P.O. Box 308/986 Magnolia Street, Tunica, MS 38676

Candidate challenges August primary

The Democratic Executive Committtee of Tunica County held an opening hearing on Thursday, Sept. 3, to formally respond to a petition of challenge to the Aug. 4 primary brought by a candidate for Beat 5 supervisor. Officials said they will hand down a decision in the matter within 10 days.

On Aug. 24, Curley Matthews submitted a letter to the DEC, citing 10 irregularities within the primary election that could have impacted the selection of a Democratic nominee for Beat 5 supervisor. Matthews’s letter reports that at least 23 people voted in Beat 5 that should have voted in other beats; that prior to Aug. 4, he was not able to obtain a correct voter roll from the Circuit Clerk’s office; that at least 15 affidavit ballots in Precinct 10 were rejected due to poll worker deficiency, disenfranchising voters; affidavit ballots were cast without corresponding signatures on the register; that at least eight absentee ballots were counted in Precinct 10 that contained deficiencies such as but not limited to: voter assistance boxes not filled out, voter application envelopes improperly filled out by the clerk, voter appeared to vote in person after voting by absentee; that at least one of the ballot boxes in Beat 5 was not sealed after the polls closed and was transported to the Tunica County Courthouse unsealed; that six affidavit ballots in Precinct 12 were accepted but only three of the voters signed the register; that despite similarities, all affidavits in Precinct 12 were accepted and all affidavit ballots in Precinct 10 were rejected; that voting machine materials, including but not limited to missing canisters and missing print-outs of vote tallies, were not included in at least two precincts. Matthews asked the DEC to “call the meeting as required by law to review this petition.”

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WHEREAS, Mae T. Earnheart has served Tunica County as Accounts Payable Clerk working with Tunica County Administration for twenty (20) years; and

WHEREAS, Mae T. Earnheart, throughout her service to Tunica County, has displayed the highest degrees of professionalism and integrity; and

WHEREAS, Mae T. Earnheart treated all persons with dignity and respect; and

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School system, community mourn Robinsonville teacher

Tunica County Schools and the community are mourning the sudden and tragic death of Sharonda Butler Johnson.

Johnson, a native of Tunica, collapsed while at work at Robinsonville Elementary early Tuesday morning for causes yet to be determined.  Multiple attempts by school staff and paramedics to revive her failed, sources report.  She was pronounced dead on arrival by paramedics.

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County supervisors set tax levy, get budget overview

Citizens and supervisors got a bit more clarity at Tuesday’s Board meeting, and taxpayers got a bit of good news – the 2015-2016 county tax levy will be slightly lower than last year’s.

Near the end of a long meeting, the Board approved an overall levy of 89.49 mills, which is up slightly due to increases requested by the Tunica County School District and the Yazoo-Mississippi Delta Levee Board. But the portion of that overall levy set for county government will be 2.5 mills lower.

County administrator Michael Thompson said there were ‘a few adjustments to be made” to the county budget, and though no paper copies were made available to the public this week, Thompson read out totals for the various funds, including:

• $25,064,613 for the general fund;

• $5.4 million for the road fund;

• $3.4 million for the General Obligation Bond Fund.

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