Light vote through 4 p.m.; just 4,244 ballots cast at  most of the 25 precincts. Why today’s vote is among the more critical we’ve had in years. City, county residents to decide fate of $143.8 million in tax extensions. Updates all day.

Light vote through 4 p.m.; just 4,244 ballots cast at most of the 25 precincts. Why today’s vote is among the more critical we’ve had in years. City, county residents to decide fate of $143.8 million in tax extensions. Updates all day.


With less that three hours to go, it appears we’re headed for a very light turnout. 

.Through 4 p.m., with most of the 25 precincts reporting, at least 4,244 voters had been cast today. Add more than 3,000 advance votes and we could be heading toward at least 10,000 total. Safe bet right now: 25 percent turnout — but there’s still time to growth that. Precincts close at 7 p.m.

So what does it all mean today? 

Few local elections in recent years carry the potential impact of today’s vote. Some points to consider if you’re not sure about taking the time to vote today:

Nearly $144 million in extended taxes: From new to rehabbed schools to a second college and career center to greatly expanded athletics facilities to a potential hub for regional agriculture and a collection of smaller projects, two separate votes — the SPLOST and ELOST (education) — await all city and county voters today.

Both tax votes are far different from the ones that would be extended starting April 1, 2019, if enough yes buttons are clicked. Some voters see pluses and minuses when reviewing the government and education project packages. While some say they provide blueprints for a better community, others ask whatever happened to the word “special.”  And as desperate as the need for a new Pepperell Middle School appears, are voters ready for an indoor sports facility tucked behind a second career academy?

A majority of yes votes move both projects forward. More no votes all-but-guarantees we’ll see a new round of tax extension proposals in 2018 but perhaps with different projects — and maybe a few other changes. Governments favor off-year elections (read: 2019) for such issues but some clocks could be ticking for additional funding.

A changing school board: Rome’s Board of Education certainly isn’t the sleepy little election it used to be. In 2013, 11 candidates ran for seven seats. This year, 15 in all including 10 challengers and five incumbents. This race could validate the direction the Rome City School System has been moving in recent years. But just as likely, you could see a board majority comprised of first-time office holders. Already, two of seven board members didn’t see new terms this year. How many of the remaining five will survive tonight? Though campaign season has been a snoozer, this is the best race on the ballot this year — if you’re a city voter.

A commission in flux?: On paper, it looks like three incumbents vs. three challengers. But in Rome’s case, you vote for your top three choices to fill the three seats on the ballot and hope the trio makes it in. Three challengers have other ideas and that’s where the fun begins. If there is a shakeup with incumbents, who will build the new alliances? The convention wisdom on the street says one commissioner will lose — but it likely won’t be the one that’s been targeted throughout the past two years.

What to know about election day:

Precincts are open 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Turnout could be trending on the light side, given that 3,103 people voted in advance of election day over three weeks (including one weekend). That represents people from both the cities of Rome and Cave Spring as well as unincorporated Floyd County. See precinct list below or the  My Voter Page

What’s on the ballot?

City of Rome: Three City Commission seats, seven School Board seats and separate extensions of the SPLOST and education special tax (would go into effect April 1, 2019, the day after the current taxes expire).

Floyd County: Separate extensions of the SPLOST and education special tax

How did the 2013 SPLOST and education votes go?

  • Education package: 9,251 votes for (67.1 percent) and 4,541 against (32.9 percent). Projects included a new Coosa High School.
  • Government package: 6,885 votes for, 50.3 percent, and 6,801 votes against or 49.3 percent. This included the tennis center, airport expansion, a new animal shelter and other projects. 

Weather forecast: 

Rain chance will rise from 30 percent at 7 a.m. up to 50 percent at 4 p.m. Temperatures will start at 64 degrees at 7 a.m., peaking at 75 degrees at 4 p.m. and then dropping throughout the afternoon. Rainfall: Around two tenths of an inch. Best bet: Vote between 7 a.m. and noon.

Media coverage:

Hometown Headlines will post updates throughout the day on the website and social media. Will have continuing coverage tonight just after 7 p.m.  until the last returns are counted and posted. Web, social media and Hometown Text as winners are declared and tax votes decided.

WRGA 98.7 FM will have “cut ins” throughout Tuesday evening with election results.Look for two to four updates per hour.

Hometown Headlines Radio Edition on WRGA 98.7 FM, beginning at 7:10 a.m. Wednesday: Reaction, updates and what’s next following Tuesday’s vote.

Updates from Secretary of State Brian Kemp. Kemp encourages registered voters to check the state’s My Voter Page or free “GA SOS” mobile app to see if their locality is holding an election and view personalized voting information. Check the “My Voter Page”  to view a sample ballot, find your polling location, and locate other helpful information before you go to the polls. You can also access this information by downloading the free “GA SOS” app on your smartphone. If you suspect or witness any election or voting irregularities, you can submit a complaint through the Secretary of State’s “Stop Voter Fraud” website or call us at (877) 725-9797. All complaints are promptly reviewed by P.O.S.T.-certified law enforcement officers, and if warranted, officers will open a formal State Election Board investigation.

Here is an updated list of city and county polling locations in Floyd County:

County Poll Alto Park Alto Park Elementary School
528 Burnett Ferry Road
Rome, Georgia 30165
County Poll Armuchee New Armuchee Baptist Church
Church/Christian Life Center
5385 Martha Berry Highway
Rome, Georgia 30165
County Poll Barkers Renaissance Marquis
3126 Cedartown Highway
Rome, Georgia 30161
County Poll Cave Spring Cave Spring Community Center
10 Georgia Avenue
Cave Spring, Georgia 30124
County Poll Chulio Spring Creek Baptist Church
Church/Family Life Center
2636 Chulio Road
Rome, Georgia 30161
County Poll East Lindale Hollywood Baptist Church Howell Gymnasium
112 Lombardy Way
Rome, Georgia 30161
City Poll East Rome Floyd County Health Department
16 East 12th Street
Rome, Georgia 30161
County Poll Etowah Senior Citizen Center
1325 Kingston Road
Rome, Georgia 30161
County Poll Everett Springs Mt. Tabor United Methodist Church
2341 Everett Springs Road
Armuchee, Georgia 30105
County Poll Floyd Springs Floyd Springs Baptist Church
1869 Floyd Springs Road
Rome, Georgia 30165
County Poll Foster’s Mill West Floyd Ruritan Club
146 Livingston Road
Rome, Georgia 30161
County Poll Garden Lakes Anthony Recreation Center
2901 Garden Lakes Blvd.
Rome, Georgia 30165
County Poll Glenwood Thornton Recreation Center
102 North Floyd Park Road
Rome, Georgia 30165
County Poll Howell Flint Hill Baptist Church
111 Morris Road
Rome, Georgia 30161
City Poll Mt. Alto North Garden Lakes Baptist Church
Fellowship Hall
2200 Redmond Circle NW
Rome, Georgia 30165
City Poll Mt. Alto South Fellowship Baptist Church
314 Burnett Ferry Road
Rome, Georgia 30165
County Poll North Carolina Coosa Middle School  212 Eagle Drive, Rome, GA 30165
City Poll North Rome The Rome Civic Center
400 Civic Center Drive
Rome, Georgia 30161
County Poll Riverside Riverside Baptist Church
48 Ash Street
Rome, Georgia 30161
City Poll South Rome Lovejoy Baptist Church
The Joy Center
436 Branham Avenue
Rome, Georgia 30161
County Poll Texas Valley Armuchee Baptist Church
6648 Big Texas Valley Road
Rome, Georgia 30161
City Poll Town Rome The Rome Civic Center
400 Civic Center Drive
Rome, Georgia 30161
County Poll Vann’s Valley VFW Post 4911
2623 Cedartown Highway
Rome, Georgia 30161
County Poll Watters Shannon Recreation Center/Scout Hut Center
40 Minshew Road
Shannon, Georgia 30172
County Poll West Lindale Gilbreath Recreation Center
106 Garden Avenue
Lindale, Georgia 30147



Tuesday: Floyd County Republican Women meet at 11:30 a.m. for lunch at Red Lobster followed by the meeting beginning at noon. Guest speaker: Josh McKoon, candidate for Georgia secretary of state.

The Nov. 7 ballot: Candidate and tax proposals

The 2017 special tax vote extension: The pros and cons on the special tax that would fund projects throughout the county as well as in the cities of Rome and Cave Spring. Now posted at Special Tax

Hometown Radio: 27-minute Q&A on the $63.8 million government tax extension with County Manager Jamie McCord, Sammy Rich. Plus: SPLOST debate between Danny Price and Randy Smith. SPLOST

The 2017 education tax extension: A closer look at projects both the Floyd County and city of Rome school systems would fund with the extended tax. No posted at Education Tax.

Hometown Radio: Q&A on the $80 million education tax extension with Dr. John Jackson, Floyd Schools, and Lou Byars, Rome City Schools. ELOST

Rome Board of Education: 15 candidate profiles, Q&As on education tax, school system’s direction, technology.Among the items on the ballot on Nov. 7 will be all seven seats for the Rome City Board of Education. Hometown Headlines offers interviews with the record 15 candidates on the ballot. Click Rome School Board

Rome City Commission candidate profiles and their answers to our questions on special taxes, tax allocation districts, economic development and their achievements or goals. There are three Rome City Commission seats on the Nov. 7 ballot from Ward Two; they are the seats held by Wendy Davis, Jamie Doss and Sue Lee. All three are running for re-election and face challengers Bill Kerestes, Randy Quick and Monica Sheppard. Click City Commission

Campaign finance reports: You’ll find the updated reports for the City Commission and School Board candidates here

Additional resources

Georgia Highlands College’s Community Watch program has shared interviews with the six Rome City Commission candidates for three seats on Ward Two performed by Dr. Jonathan Hershey, Dean, Humanities Division and  GHC alumnus Greg Shropshire. The shows currently are running on GHTV Comcast Channel 4 as well.  Look for interviews with the 15 school board candidates soon. The links:

School Board: Here’s the link to the School Board candidate profiles from Community Watch: School Board


Below please find the sample ballots for the Rome City Commission, Rome School Board and countywide government and education tax extension proposals. The ballots were taken from the elections office’s home page. Click here for more.

Rome voters only: City Commission and School Board races.
Education tax extension proposal; going before voters in Rome, Cave Spring and Floyd County.
Municipal and county government tax extension proposal; going before voters in Rome, Cave Spring and Floyd County.


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