VALDOSTA -- Tuesday's general election brought Lowndes County voters out of the woodwork.

Board of Elections Supervisor Deb Cox said an estimated 60 percent of Lowndes County's registered voters went to the polls. She said this occurred over the course of several days, including early and absentee voting sessions.

"Turnout was tremendous," she said. "It has to be a record in Lowndes County."

Cox said the five-day early voting period, Oct. 25-29, helped get the numbers up, with approximately 8,000 voters visiting the Board of Elections. She said this really taxed the facility's capacity and available parking.

"We had police here assisting with traffic during early voting," she said.

Should Georgia lawmakers agree, Cox said extending the early voting session into the weekend would certainly lead to even higher voter turnout in the future. In the meantime, she said Board of Elections officials are considering the possibility of opening early voting precincts in Hahira and Lake Park, to alleviate congestion and increase the number of participating voters.

"We are looking for every opportunity to make casting votes as easy as possible for voters," she said.

By the end of Tuesday night, all votes cast at precincts around town and absentee ballots were counted, Cox said. All that remains are roughly 100 provisional ballots, which Board of Elections officials have until 5 p.m. on Thursday to review and count.

Cox said the race for the Valdosta Board of Education District 6 seat will be decided during a Nov. 23 runoff. The two candidates who qualified for the runoff were William "Bill" Love, who had 33.86 percent of the total vote, and David Waller Sr., who received 43.45 percent of the total vote.

According to the Official Code of Georgia Section 21-2-501's plurality rule, which states that a runoff is avoided in such a nonpartisan race when one candidate receives at least 45 percent of the total vote, Waller did not receive enough votes Tuesday to declare him the winner.

To contact reporter Jessica Pope, please call (229) 244-3400, ext. 255.

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