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Watauga Commissioner Races Set for November

By Jesse Wood

May 7, 2014. The three Watauga County Board of Commissioners contests are set now that the May 6 primary has taken place.

Assuming the unofficial primary results hold up, the three races in the general election will be:

  • District 3: Karen Lerch (R) v. Billy Kennedy (D) (I)
  • District 4: Larry Turnbow (D) v. David Blust (R) (I)
  • District 5: Barbara Kinsey (D) v. Jimmy Hodges (R)

During the GOP primary, the field for District 3 and District 5 was narrowed down from two Republican candidates to one candidate from the GOP.

Lerch defeated Matt Klutz by a slim margin. Lerch had 50.78 percent of the vote with 1,605 votes, while Klutz had 1,556 votes.

Following the vote, Lerch acknowledged the closeness of the race on her campaign page: “Good morning and a very sincere thank you to all of you for your prayers, support, votes and as the race with Matt Klutz was so very close, showing me that I have a lot of work ahead of me. I will be setting up a new email address in the next day or so for you to ask me questions, tell me your concerns, and share ideals for our County as I want to serve and be an extension of your voice…”

The GOP primary for District 5 wasn’t no where near as close as the Lerch/Klutz contest. Hodges defeated Allen Trivette soundly with 66 percent of the vote. Hodges had 2,282 votes compared to Trivette’s 1,170.

Hodges commented on his campaign page after the race as well: “Thank you for your overwhelming support during the primary election! Looking forward to the general election in November!”

See listing of unofficial results of races on Avery and Watauga County ballots.