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Piper, Mills and Pais Win in Forsyth County Runoff Elections

While Martha Zoller won in five counties, including Forsyth, it's Doug Collins who will go on to represent Republicans in the U.S. House from the 9th district in Nov.

Forsyth County voters decided who they wanted to elect as their sheriff, coroner and commissioner in District 4 during Tuesday's Primary runoff elections.

There were 13,702 ballots cast Tuesday, according to Barbara Luth, supervisor of the Forsyth County Voter Registrations & Elections Department. There were 3,944 ballots cast during early and advance voting and 466 absentee ballots by mail returned.

Luth did say the only thing missing was six provisional votes that they will take a look at in the coming days. But she did point out, "It's not going to make a difference in any of the races."

Here are the unofficial results of the 2012 Primary runoff elections in Forsyth County:

Forsyth County Sheriff

Candidate Percent - Votes Ted Paxton - R (incumbent)  
48.75% - 6,624
Duane K. Piper - R 51.25% - 6,965

(25 of 25 precincts reporting)

Forsyth County Commissioner District 4

Candidate Percent - Votes Patrick Bell - R (incumbent)   34.41% - 1,316 Cindy Jones Mills - R
65.59% - 2,508

(25 of 25 precincts reporting)

Forsyth County Coroner

Candidate     Percent - Votes Harold Bennett - R     42.40% - 5,510 Mary Beth Pais - R     57.60% - 7,485

(25 of 25 precincts reporting)

U.S. Representative in 113th Congress from the 9th Congressional District (Forsyth County)

Candidate    Percent - Votes Doug Collins - R    44.76% - 2,492 Martha Zoller - R    55.24% - 3,075

(11 of 11 precincts reporting)

While Zoller may have won Forsyth and four other counties, it was Collins who won the majority vote and will represent Republicans in the U.S. House from the 9th district against Democrat Jody Cooley in Nov.

Candidate   Percent - Votes Doug Collins - R   54.62% - 38,993 Martha Zoller - R   45.38% - 32,393

(20 of 20 precincts reporting)

Editor's Note: Results are official at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 24, according to the Forsyth County Voter Registrations & Elections Department.

Marc August 22, 2012 at 12:23 PM
Even though Sheriff Paxton was defeated it by the skin of his teeth. That tells me the good ol boy net work is still alive and well and our new Sheriff will have his hands full. Although we made some strides forward in this election, they were baby steps. We have miles to go. Good luck to our new Sheriff and to District 4's new commissioner.
Ralph Stepp August 22, 2012 at 05:47 PM
Forsyth County voters are to be congratulated for their selection of a new Republican Sheriff Candidate. The drunk is gone. Cindy Mills won by nearly a 2:1 margin in District 4 thanks to Forsyth County Tea Party and especially Hal Schneider's dedication. Also please note that the Forsyth County Tea Party endorsed Martha Zoller but she lost to the Gold Dome Machine. The Forsyth Good Ole Boy Network is on notice that the Forsyth County Tea Party is a force to be reckoned with and don't forget Steve, Hal and those extraordinary folks that give their hord work, money and support for the right candidate. Congratulations FCTP!
Julieanne August 23, 2012 at 01:27 AM
I disagree Marc. I am proud of us for showing the Incumbents that the net work is dead. There's a new Sheriff in town. .....Pun completely intended.
Georgia Patriot August 23, 2012 at 02:54 AM
I hope Mr. Piper will be a better Steward of citizens money than Paxton was. Mustang GT sports cars, Center Console sportfish boats, Horse trailers, Prison vans with Chrome appearance packages and Quarter million dollar armored "tanks" are just a few examples of how Paxton had no regard for fiscal responsibility. I hope Mr. Piper encourages those under his charge to obey the same laws they enforce, and treat the citizens of the county with respect and dignity. and actually have consequences for them when the don't, Unlike Paxton. Finally, I hope Mr. Piper shows character and will eventually repay those creditors that got cheated when he filed bankruptcy.
Jack Bauer August 23, 2012 at 12:38 PM
What is bad is that only a little over 13,000 people voted in the run off as opposed to over 27,000 in the Primary. Piper lost by 5,000 votes, receiving only 27% of the votes (7,529) and gets runoff. Then he wins while receiving less votes (6,965) than he did in the Primary. Something needs to be changed about the voting laws. If you get majority you should win. Tip on managing the budget, just stop paying the bills and file bankruptcy, that always seems to work. I just don't see why you have to throw names out in your mail flyers and criticize someone personally. You shouldn't throw rocks, if you live in a glass house. Trying out the new sports car?.... ..I'd be speeeding too, if I just left my girlfriend and wanted to get back before my wife found out! Just saying It's all good though, I ain't mad ya!!! Congratulations. I guess it could be worse, maybe. We could have Victor Hill.
Gary Cooper August 23, 2012 at 04:03 PM
Congrats to Cindy Jones Mills, the new Sheriff-elect, and Coroner-elect. As for the outgoing Sheriff, it is a mixed bag with me. I agree with the sentiments about the budget and the Sheriff did spend lavishly on some items and the constant new cars did get a bit out of hand. However, the Sheriff is only 1/2 the responsible party on the budget. I do want to disagree with many over the last several months and that is the way the Sheriff's office has been ran from a leadership standpoint. Ted Paxton changed the mindset and professionalism in that office and for that he should be commended. I have lived here long enough to know what his predecessors did and how unprofessional many who served under them were. I also know that the Sheriff's office is top notch in how the deputies are trained and how they treat the community. Unlike those counties around us, we don't have high crime rates, SWAT teams shooting 16 year kids, investigators carelessly missing important evidence at a crime scene, inmates escaping the jail en masse, deputies who harass citizens, and a Sheriff who uses his office to bully other elected officials. The major crimes in our community over the last 12 years were investigated and closed quickly. Yes he had his issues with personal mishaps and a small number of deputies over the years doing stupid things. However, his law enforcement leadership brought about a much needed change to Forsyth and for that I thank him. You don't win three terms by mistake.
Gary Cooper August 23, 2012 at 04:06 PM
The only change I would make about election law, is to have the runoff choices be selected on the actual primary day and not have a 3 week (and thanks to the Justice Department, in 2014 and beyond it will be 6-8 weeks) runoff. The voters who come out in the primary should decide a primary choice and then a runoff choice (if needed). This will also keep the counties from having to spend thousands of dollars just to hold a runoff where only 12% or less of the people turnout. Either that or do away with runoffs in this state, which be careful for what you wish for if you support that idea.
Alan McKee August 26, 2012 at 12:45 PM
Georgia Patriot - What is the point in throwing in a personal dig on the man?
Marc August 27, 2012 at 04:30 PM
There was no mistake in winning 3 times. Just enough of the good ol boys voting to keep him there. As Forsyth Co has more and more people from the outside moving in and as others living here not privy to the goings on start to see the light, the network will come to a crawl. If by mindset you mean buying more toys than any county of this size should ever have , he certainly had that. And the crime rate stats are more product of the quality of our population than anything the Sheriffs dept has done.When it come to crime, and sheriff or police department is mostly a investigative job as apposed to prevention. Mainly I see sheriffs handing out tickets, setting up speed traps on 369 and surrounding areas and parking in front of establishments that serve alcohol hoping to catch a DUI to add to the counties coffers At any given time I can count 5- 7 Sheriffs cars on 369 from 400 to Dr Bramblett Rd. If these cars were patrolling the neighborhoods that would be another story but the are there to make 369 and Rt 9 toll roads. This is the mentality that has to change. The citizens of this county should not cringe when they see a Sheriffs car. That being said to Cindy I say Do we really need to spend 1 1/2 to 2 million dollars on elaborate new fire stations? These new fire stations are nicer than most of the upscale homes in our county. Certainly simple metal buildings would do?
Gary Cooper August 27, 2012 at 04:43 PM
Really Marc? Good ole boys elected him three times? If he won with 50-60% of the vote, then I would agree with you. However, Paxton won his two re-elections by 80%. I think that was a little more than the good ole boys. And by mindset, I meant actually being involved in the community and serving them with respect. That was not very prevalent prior to Paxton's administration. And you keep thinking the FCSO has nothing to do with crime prevention, while the facts speak for themselves. Gang problems are on the rise in our neighboring communities, who just happen to have the same "quality of population" and those police agencies are not doing some of the things that the FCSO has done to prevent these issues. And the comment you make about deputies handing out tickets and your complaining about stopping drunk drivers by actually preventing them from being on the roads speaks a lot about your character. I certainly hope the Sheriff-elect doesn't buy that argument from you or he too will be looking for a new job in 4 years. I live close to 369 and I can tell you I don't see a high rate of speed traps nor do I see many deputies handing out tickets. And obviously you don't notice the abundance of businesses and neighborhoods that line Hwy 369. Maybe that is the reason why deputies are on that road so often? The citizens of this county don't "cringe" when they see a deputy. That is only your characterization of them and it is wrong.
Gary Cooper August 27, 2012 at 04:47 PM
"Do we really need to spend 1 1/2 to 2 million dollars on elaborate new fire stations?" Perhaps you missed the part about these being approved by voters on SPLOSTs referendums? You obviously haven't paid a visit to one of the older fire stations in the county to see how bad the working conditions can be for our fire fighters.
Marc August 27, 2012 at 05:06 PM
My character? My character is appalled by sheriffs harassing establishments doing legitimate business and arbitrarily pulling over citizens coming from those establishments hoping to hit the jackpot. And what is the abundance of business on 369? The neighborhoods I see and if they were in those neighborhoods I would not see them all together on 369 would I ? Open your eyes. Should I take pics of the traps on 369? Across from Azzuries. At the church by Leons? At the lot across from the Chevron station? By Wallace Tatum Rd? Gravit Rd? Magnolia Creek Drive? The empty lot across from Wilkes? Dr Bramblett Rd? 369 is virtually a toll Rd.
Marc August 27, 2012 at 05:10 PM
Gary, I can see you are part of the tax and spend crowd. Splost is a sham convincing tax payers to spend money on projects not needed or very poorly explained if not misdirected
Gary Cooper August 27, 2012 at 05:19 PM
Deputies harassing businesses? Let's see, if a person is patronizing at an establishment that serves alcohol and that person has had too much to drink and then leaves in their car, why is it harassing for a deputy to pull them over and take them in for a DUI? That keeps that dangerous situation from being on the street and killing an innocent person. Obviously you would rather have less deputies and more innocent people hurt from DUIs. And if Hwy 369 is a speed trap and a toll road, they are doing a lousy job at it. Just because you have a problem following the driving laws, doesn't mean others do.
Marc August 27, 2012 at 05:21 PM
I want to make a clear point. I am not anti law or anti police. I am anti police state. My view is that when you have so many sheriffs in a county that has so little crime. Well Idle hands and all that. They start finding things to do. I suggest that GPS is put on all the patrol cars and for 6 months track them. I think you would find a tremendous amount over over lap.
Marc August 27, 2012 at 05:28 PM
So let me understand. You believe that just because a establishment serves alcohol that give our sheriffs the right to park outside and deter business? And just because I eat at this establishment the sheriffs have the right to pull me over when I leave said establishment just because they serve alcohol?
Gary Cooper August 27, 2012 at 05:47 PM
Ah, so FCSO cars are now deterring business? Seriously Marc are you hearing yourself? This is a not a problem as you make it seem. If it was, it would have been rectified a long time ago. No Marc, the deputies are there to deter a crime from happening - DUI. They can only pull you over with probable cause. If you leave the establishment and exhibit signs of being intoxicated, then yes they can pull you over. If you just eat food at that establishment and then leave, then they cannot pull you over unless you give them some other reason to (like speeding or weaving). The scenario you outline is not something that is happening very frequently and it sounds like you are sour from an episode that you experienced and are taking it out on the entire office. Paxton lost this election for two reasons 1) His office was a spendthrift and there was enough voter angst over spending that it built a very respectable opposition, and 2) His voters were way overconfident that he would sail in the runoff and didn't come back out to vote. The issues in this election were not about "speed traps" that don't exist or too many deputies on the roads and only writing tickets or terrorizing local businesses. The only businesses they went after are the ones who don't follow the law, like allowing underage consumption, gambling, or selling synthetic pot. This election was about one thing....the budget. But you keep telling yourself that voters changed it for your reasons.
Gary Cooper August 27, 2012 at 05:49 PM
Tax and spend crowd? No Marc, I am no tax and spend liberal. I actually believe in fiscal responsibility, but when a referendum is passed and the items on the list are for replacement fire stations, don't make it sound like only a small number of people wanted these "things".
Marc August 27, 2012 at 07:03 PM
Gary, I agree the budget was the main focus. I am just pointing out other items that need addressing. And I do not believe the people knew the cost of these fire houses. The Jail and new courthouse was passed with the same smoke and mirrors and mis direction. The reason SPLOSTS pass is because those pushing them do it with emotion as opposed to facts. The TSPLOST woke up people. It will be very difficult to pass another (I hope). And besides, if every time our elected officials feel they need something they put it to the people to vote on, why do we need them? Is that not why we elected them to make those decisions and defend why or why not they voted the way they did?
Julieanne August 27, 2012 at 07:10 PM
I hate when I forget to log in before making a huge post. I agree with Marc. I agreed with Marc before I saw the horse trailer. Then about 2 days before voting I saw the horse trailer. It was HUGE and shiney for 1 or 2 horses could probably haul 12. It had retractable FLY SCREENS on the windows. I actually thought it was country singers RV till I saw the horse poke it's head out of the retractable screen. Ya know these horses that patrol the avenues.. A PRIVATE PROPERTY so basically we are mall cops now with fancy horse trailers? What the heck. The spending is out of control. It needs to tend to a growing county. Maybe expanding precincts to places like Vickery Creek and into Northwest Forsyth instead of the South Precinct which is like 7 miles from the main precinct and the City of Cummings own police precinct. What if someone needs a police officer on the other side of the mountain? Wait we got a horse trailer and some horses to work on private property. This county is flush with money from "the lake people" who own million dollar waterfront properties. Yet it lacks way behind in all ways to what growing counties need.
Ralph Stepp August 30, 2012 at 04:06 PM
I suspect that the Mustang GT, Paxton Jeep, Horse Trailer, armored tank et al were purchased or traded for by using confiscated drug vehicles as trades and boot paid with drug funds because that money comes with lesser controls and public scrutiny than the budget. I could be wrong but Duane has promised and will not fall into the holes left by Paxton. Having been involved with more than one rescue wherein our Marine Patrol were instrumental in saving lives and observation, the need for the center console for patrol is not a mistake nor extravagant on any level. Deputies, having access from all sides gives them more workable rescue and access too. Working with the PWC’s they have effective tools if not restricted by availability I submit that more of both crafts would have reduced this recent spate of fatalities.

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