By John Brice
Election Day is right around the corner coming up on Tuesday, November 8th, 2022 and it is emerging as an unpredictable set of contests for the thoughtful consideration of Alabama voters. Alongside the expected Republican and Democrat party candidates there are several Independent and Libertarian Party options on this year’s ballot. Taking the time to reflect upon the policy positions and philosophies of this year’s contenders is a worthy investment for every citizen who is united through the body politic.
In the governor’s race there is the incumbent GOP Governor Kay Ivey running against democrat Yolanda Rochelle Flowers and James “Jimmy” Blake from the Libertarian Party. Incumbent GOP Lieutenant Governor Will Ainsworth might be running unopposed if it were any other year, however, he is being challenged by Ruth Page-Nelson from the Libertarian Party. This past Spring Katie Britt emerged as the winner of not only a highly contested GOP primary battle to run for the United States Senate but also achieved victory in a spirited run-off against the highly renowned Congressman Mo Brooks. She will face John Sophocleus of Opelika who represents the Libertarian Party and democrat Will Boyd.
Three candidates are running for the United States Representative seat in the 3rd Congressional District against GOP incumbent Mike Rogers; Thomas “Sick of DC” Casson of the Libertarian Party, Independent Doug Bell and democrat Lin Veasey. Attorney General Steve Marshall is the GOP incumbent running against democrat challenger Wendell Major. Randy Price, GOP incumbent State Senator in District 13, is running unopposed aside from the write-in candidate option which is available for all of the races on the ballot.
Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, Place 5 is a race between republican Greg Cook and democrat Anita L. Kelly and republican Kelli Wise is running unopposed to be Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, Place 6. Secretary of State is a three-way race between republican Wes Allen, libertarian Jason “Matt” Shelby and democrat Pamela J. Laffitte. Young Boozer is the republican running against libertarian Scott Hammond to be State Treasurer. State Auditor is a race between republican Andrew Sorrell and libertarian Leigh Lachine. Rick Pate is the republican running against libertarian Jason Clark to be Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries.
Public Service Commissioner, Place No. 1 is a matchup between republican Jeremy ODen and libertarian Ron Bishop. Chip Beeker is the republican running against libertarian Laura Lane to be Public Service Commissioner, Place No. 2. Tracie West is a republican running unopposed to be the State Board of Education Member occupying the seat for District No. 2 and republican Kevin M. hall is running unopposed as well to be Circuit Court Judge, 5th Judicial Circuit Place No. 1
Mike Segrest is the republican running unopposed for District Attorney, 5th Judicial Circuit. With the retirement of longtime Chambers County Sheriff Sid Lockhart republican Jeff Nelson is running against democrat Jeff Blackstone to replace him. Incumbent democrat Jeff Jones is being challenged by independent Ricky Price to be Chambers County Coroner. Bob Fincher is the incumbent republican running unopposed for State Representative, District 37. In District 38 incumbent republican Debbie Wood is being challenged by libertarian Charles Temm Jr. Vicki Leak and Jennifer Hunt are both republicans running unopposed to be members of the Chambers County Board of Education in districts 5 and 6 respectively. Chambers County Commission Member seats are republican incumbents James WIlliam, David Eastridge and Debra Riley running unopposed in districts 3, 5 and 6 respectively.
Amendments on the ballot (verbatim)
STATEWIDE AMENDMENT 1; Proposing an amendment to Section 16 of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, now appearing as Section 16 of the Official Recompilation of the Constitution of Alabama 1901, as amended, to create Aniah’s Law, to provide that an individual is entitled to reasonable bail prior to conviction, unless charged with capital murder, murder, kidnapping in the first degree, rape in the first degree, sodomy in the first degree, sexual torture, domestic violence in the first degree, human trafficking in the first degree, burglary in the first degree, arson in the first degree, robbery in the first degree, terrorism when the specified offense is a Class A felony other than murder, and aggravated child abuse of a child under the age of six.
STATEWIDE AMENDMENT 2; Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, to authorize the state, a county, or a municipality to grant federal award funds or any other source of funding designated for broadband infrastructure by state law to public or private entities for providing or expanding broadband infrastructure.
STATEWIDE AMENDMENT 3; Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, to require the Governor to provide notice to the Attorney General and to the victim’s family prior to granting a reprieve or commutation to a person sentenced to death, and to void the reprieve or commutation if the Governor fails to provide notice
STATEWIDE AMENDMENT 4; Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, as amended; to provide that the implementation date for any bill enacted by the Legislature in a calendar year in which a general election is to be held and relating to the conduct of the general election shall be at least six months before the general election.
STATEWIDE AMENDMENT 5; Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, to delete a provision giving the probate court of each county general jurisdiction over orphans’ business.
STATEWIDE AMENDMENT 6; Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, as amended, each municipality authorized under Amendment No. 8 to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, now appearing Section 216.01 of the Recompiled Constitution of Alabama of 1901, as amended, to levy and collect the ad valorem tax pursuant to Amendment No. 8 for the purpose of paying bonds and the interest thereon, and may also levy and collect such ad valorem tax and utilize such funds for capital improvements on a pay-as-you-go basis at a rate not exceeding the rate then lawfully permitted for the municipality to directly pay the costs of public capital improvements, as well as to pay the principal and interest on bonds, warrants, or other securities issued to finance or refinance the costs of the improvements; and to ratify, validate, and confirm the levy and collection of such tax levied and collected for any of these purposes prior to the ratification of this amendment.
STATEWIDE AMENDMENT 7; Proposing an amendment to revise Amendment 772 to the constitution of Alabama of 1901, as amended, to specify that all counties and municipalities may exercise the authority and powers granted by Amendment 772 to provide for economic and industrial development; to permit notice for Amendment 772 projects to be published in any newspaper in circulation in the county or municipality; and to ratify all actions and agreements of any county or municipality done under Amendment 772 unless subject to pending judicial proceedings on the date of adoption of this amendment
STATEWIDE AMENDMENT 8; Relating to Shelby County, proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, to bring certain privately owned sewer systems that use public rights-of-way of public roads under the jurisdiction of the Public Service Commission under certain conditions.
STATEWIDE AMENDMENT 9; Relating to Jefferson County and Tuscaloosa County, proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, to bring certain privately owned sewer systems that use public rights-of-way of public roads in the city limits of Lake View under the jurisdiction of the Public Service Commission, beginning January 1, 2023 and ending December 31, 2027.
STATEWIDE AMENDMENT 10; Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, to authorize the Code Commissioner, contingent upon the ratification of an official Constitution of Alabama of 2022, to renumber and place constitutional amendments ratified before or on the same day as the Constitution of Alabama of 2022, based on a logical sequence and the particular subject or topic of the amendment, and to provide for the transfer of existing annotations to any section of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, to the section as it is numbered or renumbered in the Constitution of Alabama of 2022.
PROPOSED AMENDMENTS OF LOCAL APPLICATION TO APPEAR ON THE BALLOT IN ONLY THE COUNTY OF APPLICATION
PROPOSED FOUR (4) MILL AD VALOREM TAX; “Shall the Chambers County Commission, pursuant to Section 5 of the Chambers County Local Constitutional Amendments and Article XI, Section 215.02 of the Recompiled Constitution of Alabama of 1901, continue to levy and collect a special, countywide, four (4) mill ad valorem or property tax to be used for the exclusive purpose of capital expenditures as to constructing, equipping and maintaining George H. Lanier Memorial Hospital, a private non-profit hospital, or the pledging of the proceeds from said tax to the payment of bonds, notes, or other indebtedness in furtherance of said purposes beginning with the fiscal year of October 1, 2023 and ending at the earlier of the fiscal tax year ending September 30, 2033 or George H. Lanier Memorial Hospital ceasing to exist.”