Wessell is elected Wilcox Sheriff; SPLOST Tax is approved

Published 9:11 am Thursday, November 9, 2023

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Dr. Haley McCall widow of the late Sheriff Robert Rodgers congratulates the newly elected Sheriff Jeff Wessell.Lucas C. Allison, Dispatch Correspondent

On Tuesday November 7, 2023, Jeff Wessel was elected by the voters of Wilcox County to fill the unexpired term of the late Sheriff Robert Rodgers which ends December 31, 2023. Four candidates qualified and ran for the office of Sheriff, the final vote tally was Jeff Wessel-1052 with 58 percent of the vote, Lloyd P. Bloodworth-397 with 22 percent, Bruce Carmichael-278 with 15 percent, and Lee Ramirez-83 with 5 percent of the vote. A total of 1810 votes were cast from 4398 registered voters. Sheriff-Elect Jeff Wessel met with supporters in Pitts, Georgia to celebrate the victory he stated that he hated that the Special Election was necessary due to the death of his dear friend and a great leader Sheriff Robert Rodgers.  He was an example to all of us and that is what I will strive to be. As I follow in his footsteps, know that I will never be able to fill his shoes, but I can follow the path that Robert was on.  I think that everyone here and all those that voted is a testament of his works and wanting them to continue. He then thanked family and friends, beginning with his wife Dee and his children and supporters for all the hard work and time put in to make this victory possible tonight.  Wessel stated he was looking forward to going forward with the current staff of the sheriff’s office who have been through a lot in the last few years and most recently the last few months, and you have persevered and carried the torch and we are proud of you all.  We will continue to carry the torch moving forward, it will take all the jailers, deputies, court personnel, and the Administrator (Mrs. Sherry Reid) the backbone of the office.  We will move forward for the citizens of Wilcox County.

Also on the ballot  was the re-authorization of the Special Local Option Sales Tax(SPLOST) ,

which will be used by Wilcox County and the cities of Rochelle, Abbeville, Pitts and Pineview for special projects in each of the respective entities.  The current SPLOST ends March 31, 2024, and the extension will begin April 1,2024, and will be collected for six years. 1801 ballots were cast in the SPLOST Election with 1387 yes votes which is 77 percent of the vote, and 414 votes NO with 23 percent of the vote.