Elections

  State board dismisses complaints against Bladen County Board of Elections members

Complaints against two members of the Bladen County Board of Elections have been dismissed by state election officials for failing to meet basic requirements.

Friday last day to register to vote in November municipal elections

Candidate forums scheduled for October ahead of 2019 Municipal Elections

  Republican Dan Bishop unofficial winner in 9th District re-do election

  New election in N.C.’s 9th district Tuesday; Experts say race could be ‘canary in the coal mine’ for 2020

State elections board encourages early voting for Sept. 10 races ahead of possible Dorian impacts

  A tale of two Dans: Bishop, McCready go toe-to-toe in NC-9 debate

Continued Coverage

  State elections board certifies voting equipment

  Election officials closely watching state vote on voting systems Friday as 2019, 2020 races loom

Early in-person voting begins for 2 congressional seats

  Governor delivers school supplies, talks pay raises with teachers

  Appeal in Columbus County sheriff dispute voluntarily dismissed in Wake County court

Brunswick County to hold educational seminars about voter ID requirements

McCrae Dowless faces additional charges as new election fraud indictments announced

McCrae Dowless indicted on more charges.

  WECT Investigates: Judge’s order blocks man from filing ‘frivolous’ lawsuits

Calvin Norton has sued local officials so many times in lawsuits deemed “frivolous” by a judge, that he has effectively had his right to sue in state court revoked. But that hasn’t stopped the Columbus County man.

See who is running for office in 2019 Municipal Elections

Candidate filing period has ended for the 2019 Municipal Elections in North Carolina

Judge issues permanent injunction after ‘unlawful’ transfer of H2GO assets

The judge handling the contentious legal battle between the Brunswick Regional Water and Sewer Authority H2GO, the Town of Leland and the Town of Belville has made a decision regarding what he deemed an unlawful transfer of assets from H2GO to the Town of Belville in 2017.

  Rep. Holly Grange of Wilmington announces she’s running for governor in 2020

  Empty Ballots: Halfway through candidate filing, several municipal races have no candidates

  Municipal elections filing begins; Wilmington mayor to seek eighth term

Candidate filing period begins today in New Hanover County

Carolina Beach mayor won’t seek reelection

Columbus County elections board certifies disputed sheriff’s race

  Lawyers file notice of appeal in Columbus County sheriff’s election dispute

Attorneys challenging the outcome of the November election for Columbus County sheriff filed a notice of appeal Friday with the North Carolina State Board of Elections. They also plan to file a complaint and a Motion for a Stay of certification with Wake County Superior Court.

  Attorney “astounded” by mayor’s comments about ongoing H2GO lawsuit

The comments Belville Mayor Mike Allen made during a May 21st meeting of the H2GO sanitary district board were recorded, and attorneys familiar with the recording say it sounds as if Allen is admitting he is using the legal appeals process to avoid complying with a judge’s order.

  State elections board issues order in Columbus County Sheriff dispute, parties plan appeals

The North Carolina State Board of Elections (NCSBE) has formally issued its findings in the case of the disputed sheriff election in Columbus County.

  General Assembly approves voter ID accommodations, including use of student IDs

House Bill 646 received final approval by a 109-6 vote in the NC House of Representatives on Tuesday.

  Priest wins Bladen Co. District 3 recount

Friday’s recount in the Bladen County commissioners race has set the record straight as to who won the county’s close election.

  Recount scheduled in Bladen County Commission race

Only four votes separate the two candidates for the commission's third district.

  NC9 Election Results: Bishop takes GOP primary; Bladen Commissioners’ race decided by four votes

Republicans in North Carolina have chosen state Sen. Dan Bishop as their party’s nominee in a special congressional election ordered after a ballot fraud scandal marred last year’s race.

Republican candidates face off in primary NC District 09 election

Ten Republican candidates for the NC-9 Congressional faced off in a primary election Tuesday, with Dan Bishop declared the winner of the Republican primary.

Bladen County, 9th district vote in election re-do

Six months after the 2018 midterms appeared to be over, Bladen County voters — along with the rest of the 9th congressional district — have taken to the polls once again.

Candidates face off in GOP primary for 9th Congressional District

Republican and unaffiliated voters in the 9th Congressional District cast ballots Tuesday to decide which GOP candidate will face Democrat Dan McCready.

NC elections board appoints Karen Brinson Bell as new director

The North Carolina State Board of Elections is expected to name Karen Brinson Bell as its next director when it meets by telephone Monday, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the board’s plans.

  State elections board sides with Jody Greene; protesters plan appeal; investigators detail absentee ballot activity

NCSBE determined Greene was a Columbus County resident when he filed to run for sheriff.

  State board holds hearing for disputed Columbus County sheriff race

The North Carolina State Board of Elections announced that it will hold a hearing Monday, May 6, regarding the disputed sheriff race in Columbus County.

  Election deception: WECT Investigates spillover of absentee ballot irregularities in Columbus County

The ties between Bladen and Columbus counties run deep, and in 2018, they shared the symptoms of absentee ballot irregularities.

  With voter confidence on the line, all eyes on Bladen County as voting gets underway

Just shy of five months after the North Carolina State Board of Elections refused to certify three races — Bladen County Commission District 3, Soil and Water Conservation District Supervisor and North Carolina’s 9th congressional seat — voters are again taking to the polls.

  Utility documents list acting sheriff’s purported residence as commercial account with cow barn

Documents subpoenaed from Duke Energy shed new light on concerns that acting Columbus County Sheriff Jody Greene may not have lived in the county prior to his election as required by state law. The documents also indicate there has been an address change on the account.

  Early voting for Republican primary begins Wednesday in NC’s 9th district

One-stop, in-person early voting in the Republican primary election for North Carolina’s 9th congressional district begins Wednesday, April 24.

  Another deputy seeking back pay from Columbus Co., says acting sheriff didn’t have authority to fire him

“It is Mr. Campbell’s position that, due to the N.C. State Board of Elections position that Mr. Green’s [sic] election was never certified, Mr. Green was without legal or actual authority to either demote or terminate Mr. Campbell.”

  Voting along party lines, Columbus County elections board decides Jody Greene was not domiciled in county

The second day of testimony included a trip for the board and the public to Greene's land in Cerro Gordo.

  Columbus County elections board hears protest of 2018 sheriff’s race, testimony to continue Thursday

Nearly five months after Election Day, the Columbus County Board of Elections is considering an election protest in the race between Jody Greene and Lewis Hatcher.

  Absentee voting opens in North Carolina’s 9th district

With a little more than six weeks until a special primary election, North Carolina’s 9th congressional district is back where it all began: absentee voting.

  Acting sheriff fired deputies despite uncertain election results

In the midst of unprecedented confusion in Columbus County over who should be serving as sheriff, some deputies have been terminated from their job. While North Carolina law generally gives sheriffs broad latitude to fire at will, pending legal challenges bring the recent firings under scrutiny.

  Columbus County BOE sets hearing in disputed sheriff’s race

The board was required by the North Carolina State Board of Elections to hold a hearing into the election protest of Gloria Smith and report back findings by April 5.

  State board sends sheriff’s election protest back to Columbus County, requires officials to take up residency issue

The dispute over the Columbus County sheriff's race is headed back to local officials.

  NCSBE wants ‘fresh start’ in Bladen County, declines to appoint former county elections board members

In order to accomplish that, the NCSBE declined to appoint a full slate of members to the Bladen County Board of Elections because several nominees have served in the role.

NCSBE hearing on Columbus Co. sheriff’s race rescheduled as board considers sending matter back to county

The North Carolina State Board of Elections will meet by phone Thursday to consider remanding part of the issues detailed in a protest appeal back to the Columbus County.

  Protecting your voice: Restoring voter confidence in the wake of election fraud

After election fraud put the national spotlight on Southeastern North Carolina, WECT Investigates took a look at how other Cape Fear area counties fared in 2018.

  NC9 Special Election: Final list of candidates determined

The stage is set for the new election in North Carolina’s 9th congressional district.

  Search warrants indicate SBI tailed Dowless during 2018 election

Months before his absentee activities would make national headlines, Leslie McCrae Dowless was being followed by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation.

  McCrae Dowless received absentee ballot data from Columbus County

Newly-surfaced documents show how Leslie McCrae Dowless, the man indicted for election fraud in Bladen County, was also active in neighboring Columbus County.

  Wilmington’s municipal elections to cost 20 percent more this year

Wilmington won’t be alone — Wrightsville Beach and Kure Beach will also see increases thanks to changes the county is making.

  New 9th district election, Bladen County re-dos scheduled

It will be September, if not November, before we know who will serve in North Carolina’s 9th congressional district.

  Town commissioner at odds with Bladen sheriff, connected to 9th district figure, voluntarily closes electronic gaming business to avoid raid

The criminal and civil matters have stretched on for years, and the disagreement between a Dublin town commissioner and the Bladen County Sheriff came up during the state's election fraud investigation. But now, at least one chapter is closed.

  NCSBE hearing into Columbus County sheriff’s race postponed; attorneys allowed to gather more evidence

The new date for the hearing is March 18.

  State elections board to schedule new NC9 election, discuss Columbus County Sheriff protest

The roughly 788,000 people of North Carolina’s 9th congressional district will soon have a date to mark on their calendars for the special election for the seat.

Sen. Britt will not seek GOP nomination in new 9th Congressional District election

Sen. Danny Earl Britt (R-Columbus, Robeson) says he will not seek the GOP nomination in the upcoming Ninth Congressional District election ordered by the NC Board of Elections.

NC9 fallout: Candidates look ahead to running in local races, again

The races for Bladen County Commission District 3, Bladen County Soil and Water Conservation District Supervisor and U.S. House of Representatives District 9 will now be re-run. The NCSBE is expected to vote on a schedule in the coming weeks.

N Carolina colleges won’t confirm student IDs OK for voting

North Carolina colleges and universities won't guarantee under criminal penalty that student identifications meet the state's requirements for voting, raising doubts about whether thousands of young adults could be blocked from the ballot box

State will monitor new elections in Bladen County

The hearing into election fraud in parts of North Carolina’s 9th congressional district might be over — but the work in Bladen County is just beginning.

State records contradict sheriff’s candidate’s address history

Documents unearthed through a subpoena appear to show contradictory information about when Columbus County Sheriff candidate Jody Greene lived in that county. Greene's residency is the subject of an ongoing challenge to his legal eligibility to serve as sheriff.

  Democrat announces another run after new House election called in NC

The Democratic candidate in the nation’s last undecided congressional race will run for the 9th district seat again now that a new election has been called.

Judge strikes down NC voter ID law OK’d by voters

The judge sided Friday with the state NAACP, which argued last year’s edition of the General Assembly that voted to put amendments to the North Carolina Constitution on the ballot was illegally constituted due to racially gerrymandered districts.

  NC9 hearing day 4: State board unanimously votes to hold new election

The state board voted 5-0 to hold a new election for the 9th Congressional district seat, Bladen County Commission District 3, and Bladen County’s Soil and Water Conservation District supervisor. The board did not set a schedule for when the election would happen.

  Day 3 of NC9 hearing: Son of Mark Harris says he found McCrae Dowless suspicious; Red Dome leader continues testimony

The North Carolina State Board of Elections’ hearing drags on with no end in sight as new information emerges about exactly who was suspicious of the absentee ballot activity in Bladen County, and when they became aware.

  NC9 hearing day 2: Witness indicates early vote totals leaked, Red Dome leader testifies

Day two of the North Carolina State Elections Board hearing into possible election fraud in District 9.

  NC9 hearing: McCrae Dowless, man at the center of the investigation into election fraud, refuses to testify as state presents evidence

An evidentiary hearing is underway at the North Carolina State Bar as the state board of elections weeds through the results of its election fraud investigation.

  With hearing set to begin, a look back at the election fraud investigation

The North Carolina State Board of Elections will take up the query into alleged fraud in the state’s 9th district and beyond on Monday, Feb. 18, but the road to the Raleigh hearing has been long and winding.

  Final documents set stage for election fraud hearing

On Tuesday, Feb. 12, parties on both sides of the aisle submitted their final argument briefs for consideration, as well as a list of witnesses attorneys intend to call.

  State concerned over Columbus County board’s dismissal of election protest on technicality

Email from State Board of Elections attorney Joshua Lawson to Columbus County attorney Amanda Prince raises questions about the Columbus County Board of Elections' handling of a protest filed in the sheriff’s race.

  Harris team asks for subpoenas for Dowless, other key players in 9th district investigation

The legal team for Republican Mark Harris wants several key players in the investigation into alleged election fraud in Bladen County and beyond to appear in person at the hearing scheduled for Feb. 18.

  While working, claiming residence in Columbus County, acting sheriff routinely gassed patrol car in Lumberton

Jody Greene was stationed in Columbus County and claimed to live there on property in Cerro Gordo. Oddly, he routinely filled up in neighboring Robeson County, well across the county line and nearly 30 minutes from his alleged residence.

  Citing election fraud hearing, lack of information, NCSBE will not appoint new members to election boards in Bladen, Columbus counties

Two counties in Southeastern North Carolina will remain without a county board of elections for the immediate future.

NCSBE sets hearing for election fraud investigation

More than two months after originally putting the certification of North Carolina’s 9th congressional district race on hold, there is finally a date-certain for learning an outcome.

  Cooper names new state board of elections

A month after a court ruling dissolved the nine-member North Carolina State Board of Elections, the new version of the board finally has its members.

  Greene pays $25K bond to keep sheriff’s seat, for now

Acting Columbus County Sheriff Jody Greene has posted a $25,000 bond to keep his seat as sheriff, for now. Wake County Superior Court Judge Graham Shirley ordered Greene to pay that bond as part of an ongoing legal dispute over who is the rightful sheriff of Columbus County.

  Grange named co-chair of state House elections committee

A New Hanover County state representative was given a key leadership role in the North Carolina General Assembly.

  Greene has yet to post required $25K bond in dispute over rightful sheriff

Attorneys for Lewis Hatcher have filed documents requesting detailed financial information, property records, and personnel records for Jody Greene in their attempt to prove Hatcher should still be serving as Columbus County sheriff.

  Judge denies request to certify NC-9 race

Wake County Superior Court Judge Paul Ridgeway will consider a petition from Republican Mark Harris for a Writ of Mandamus, a request asking the court to force the North Carolina State Board of Elections and Ethics Enforcement to certify him as the winner of the contest.