• 91°
franklin county times

Norwood sweeps to District 4 victory

By Staff
AND THE WINNER IS … Joe Norwood hands a calendar to Jackie Moore, who was among parents picking up their children from West End Elementary and Harris Upper Elementary, as he campaigns Tuesday for District 4 supervisor. Norwood defeated Rickey A. Harris 899 to 617 votes Tuesday night. Photo by Paula Merritt/The Meridian Star
By Lynette Wilson / staff writer
Nov. 20, 2002
Photojournalist Joe Norwood could be sworn into office as Lauderdale County's newest supervisor as early as today after sweeping to victory Tuesday in a runoff election.
Complete but unofficial returns showed that Norwood received 899 votes, or 59 percent, on his way to defeating county patrolman Rickey Harris, who received 617 votes, or 41 percent. Norwood would fill the unexpired District 4 term of the late Q.V. Sykes.
Election officials said results of the balloting are expected to be certified today and that Norwood could take office soon afterward. The next regularly scheduled meeting of the Lauderdale County Board of Supervisors is Dec. 2.
Norwood led a four-man field in the Nov. 5 special election and, while turnout was lighter in Tuesday's runoff, he said he was pleased with the results.
Unofficial results from five of the eight precincts showing Norwood in the lead flashed on the television screen Tuesday at 7:14 p.m., 12 minutes before the first box was carried into the Lauderdale County Circuit Clerk's Office.
The last brown padlocked box arrived at 7:50 p.m., almost 30 minutes after Norwood had been declared the unofficial winner of the contest.
Ann Watts, chairman of the Lauderdale County Election Commission, said it's not uncommon for television stations to staff voter precincts in a small election.
Of his opponent, Norwood said, "He put up a good race and kept his voters."
About 25 percent of District 4's 6,000 registered voters cast ballots in the runoff.
Reuben Little, District 4 election commissioner, said he was satisfied with the vote turnout, but that the election commission had printed more ballots to accommodate more voters.
Norwood spent the day Tuesday riding the downtown trolley through District 4 encouraging last-minute voters.
Christine Norwood, Norwood's 24-year-old daughter, said of her dad's victory, "I'm very glad it's over. I was here when he lost the election four years ago, and this victory is twice as nice. He worked hard and it paid off."
Norwood lost the District 4 supervisor election to Q.V. Sykes by 11 votes in 1999.
All five members of the Lauderdale County board face the voters again in next year's statewide general elections. The qualifying period opens Jan. 1, 2003, for the 2004-2008 term.
Central Fire Station #1 197 123 1
Oakland Heights School 155 131
Mount Barton School 58 30
City Hall 140 68
Council of Organization 219 137 1
Meridian Housing Authority 23 10
Church of God of Prophecy 94 70
Sageville Community Center 13 48
Total votes cast 1,518
NORWOOD 899 59%
HARRIS 617 41%
Source: The Lauderdale County Circuit Clerk's Office.