There has been a lot of buzz about the possibility of charges being brought before a grand jury concerning the 2006 election in Chattooga County.  Now some folks in neighboring Cherokee County, Alabama are challenging in court an election that was held in the Cedar Bluff, Alabama’s mayoral race.  Concerns center around absentee ballots.

Cedar Bluff election results are expected to be challenged in Circuit Court in Cherokee County today over possible irregularities in absentee voting.

Jimmy Wallace, a candidate for mayor, said he and two other candidates, Billie Burkhalter and Lenora McWhorter, will join a petition to be filed by Centre attorney Shane Givens.

Town Clerk DeLana Martin said she handled the distribution of absentee ballots. Some residents voted absentee at Town Hall and others were mailed, she said.

Other ballots were picked up by a designated individual. Those are the ballots that seem to be in question.

Some ballots may have been sent out improperly, Martin said.

“I let some go out that maybe should not have,” she said.

Absentee ballots could change the outcome of the runoff for mayor and council seats.

Ethel Sprouse was the top vote-getter in the mayor’s race with 163 votes. She faces Steve Lay with 138 votes in the runoff. Jimmy Wallace got 122 votes and Dale Reese received 42. If the 31 absentee ballots are disqualified, it could change who Sprouse faces in the runoff.

City attorney Dean Buttram Jr. said the town of Cedar Bluff will take the appropriate action regarding the election.