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New mayor’s election in Mississippi town set for Jan. 18

December 23, 2021 GMT

NETTLETON, Miss. (AP) — Gov. Tate Reeves has set the date for a new mayoral election in a small Northeast Mississippi town.

On Wednesday, Reeves set Jan. 18 as the election date for Nettleton’s second mayoral race in nine months. Incumbent Mem Riley is vying against challenger Phillip Baulch to lead the municipality, which borders the Lee/Monroe county line, The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal reported.

The new election follows a court order tossing the results of April’s municipal primary election, in which Riley defeated Baulch 344 to 340 votes, and ordering a new election take place. Baulch sued in May to challenge the certified results. In a ruling earlier this month, Special Circuit Judge Andrew Howorth found that five votes were illegally cast.

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Since those five votes were mingled with all other votes, the election outcome was deemed uncertain. Howorth ordered that a new election between the two men be held.

Only Baulch and Riley will be on the new election ballot. Baulch and Riley both originally appeared on the Democratic Party primary ballot, with no other candidates in the race.

Nettleton City Clerk Dana Burcham told the newspaper the new election will cost between $3,000 and $5,000.

Nettleton is a town of around 2,000 people.