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Sylva candidate drops out of race

Sylva candidate drops out of race

This year Sylva voters will be given a ballot listing six possible names for three open seats on the town’s board of commissioners, but following Danny Allen’s decision to leave the race, only five will belong to viable candidates.

“I’m not going to run because of my health,” said Allen. “I’ve got to concentrate on that and not on politics at this time.”

Allen, 63, previously served on the town board from 2001 to 2007 and then again from 2009 to 2015. He left after losing a bid for mayor in 2015 and then again in 2017, when he ran against incumbent Mayor Lynda Sossamon.

This is not the first election when Allen, who has fought cancer for years, made a decision based on his health. In 2007, the election results left him tied with fellow board member Ray Lewis, but instead of going through procedures to break the tie Allen conceded the race, a last-minute decision dictated by his cancer battle.

Allen’s decision this time around ensures that the 2019-2023 town board will have at least one brand new face. While incumbents David Nestler and Greg McPherson are running for re-election, Harold Hensley is not. The other candidates — Luther Jones, Carrie McBane and Ben Guiney — are all seeking their first term in elected office.

Despite Allen’s wish to take his name off the ballot, it will still appear there due to election board rules and timelines. If Allen were to win the election but decline to take an oath of office, the board would appoint someone to fill the seat for two years, said Jackson County Elections Director Lisa Lovedahl. The seat would then be up for election again in 2021.

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