Vote counting from Tuesday’s election went well into the night in Pulaski County. Final results still await the counting of absentee ballots and the mailed-in votes, but there were very few local races for county voters to decide. In one of the contested races, Republican Bill Hardwick easily turned back a challenge by Democrat Yvonne Reeves-Chong for the 122nd State Representative’s office that will be vacated by Republican Steve Lynch of Waynesville at the first of the year. Current Pulaski County Public Administrator Loretta Rouse, a Republican, brushed off a write-in challenge by Greg Lee. Some other Republican standard-bearers for county office had it much easier as they were unopposed for office. They included Donald Mayhew, who was re-elected as 121st District State Representative; Charles Bassett, who will be the new Pulaski County Eastern District Commissioner; Justin Smith, who will be the new Western District Commissioner; Jimmy Bench, who won re-election as Sheriff; Daniel Whittle, who won re-election as Assessor; and Roger G. Graves the Second, who was elected Pulaski County Coroner.
Russell Hobbs won a two-candidate race for 911 Western District Board Member. Doug Yurecko was the winner in a fairly close three-way race for 911 Eastern District Board Member. And Paul Slater who won a close three-way race for 911 At Large Board Member against runner-up Stephanie Leuthen and Jarrod Arnall. Long lines of waiting voters punctuated the day on Tuesday. Some voters say they waited up to three hours or more to cast their ballots.