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With No New Filings, Brantz To Face Off Against Hollingsworth in Boone Mayoral Race

By Jesse Wood

No candidates filed during the last day of the special filing period for the Boone mayoral race on Wednesday, according to Elections Director Matt Snyder. This filing period ended at noon.

This means that current Mayor Pro-Tem Rennie Brantz will face off against 23-year-old Ryan Hollingsworth. Brantz is a liberal, while Hollingsworth is conservative.

(Mayor Andy Ball’s resignation is effective at the end of July. At a council meeting last week, the council voted to give mayoral duties to Brantz, the current mayor pro-tem rather than select an interim mayor.)

Because former Councilwoman Jennifer Pena resigned earlier this year as well, there was also a separate special filing period for her vacancy. Jennifer Teague was the only person running for Boone Town Council who “clarified” that she wanted to run for Pena’s seat.

The other five Boone Town Council candidates – Lynne Mason, Loretta Clawson, Jeannine Underdown Collins, Charlotte MIzelle and David Welsh – are vying for the three expiring seats.

Because Rennie Brantz’ term doesn’t expire this election, all five council seats would be up for turnover if he were elected mayor. Snyder said that the new council would select Brantz’ successor on the council if he were to be elected after they all swear in following the election.

Snyder said he was surprised that nobody else came into the office at the last minute to either clarify for the race involving Pena’s seat or enter the mayoral race.

“We were prepared for a group of people or a person to come in,” Snyder said. “But that didn’t develop.”

Snyder said the he is excited to see such competitive races. Aside from the contest featuring only Teague, every race is competitive.

Charlie Sellers, owner of The Blowing Rock attraction, is challenging incumbent Blowing Rock Mayor J.B. Lawrence.

Beech Mountain Town Council features eight candidates for three seats. Blowing Rock Town Council features three candidates for two seats. Seven Devils Town Council features four candidates for three seats.

“We’ve got some great races,” Snyder said. “That’s good. It’s always great to have people interested in serving their community. It’s a sacrifice that takes away from families and friends and business and other things in life and is appreciated.”