LIBRARY, VOTE, ILLUSTRATION

The City of Orangeburg's municipal election will go on rain or shine, Hurricane Irma or not.

The election date cannot change, Orangeburg County Director of Voter Registration and Elections Aurora Smalls said Wednesday morning.

"We are looking at emergency plans now for the election,” she said.

The municipal election, which includes the vote for mayor and two council seats, is scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 12.

According to the National Weather Service, Hurricane Irma is forecast to begin affecting The T&D Region at about that time.

The National Weather Service is forecasting a 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms for Sept. 12, though the exact track and forward speed of Hurricane Irma was not exactly known Wednesday. It will not be known for at least a few days.

Smalls said the election commission’s plans include finding alternative sites for precincts that are in low-lying areas that could potentially flood. Smalls said an assessment of the city's voting places are under review.

"We will make alternative plans for those people to vote at a different site," Smalls said.

Signs will be placed at precincts to alert voters of any changes. Media outlets will also be told of any changes so they can share the information.

Orangeburg Mayor Michael Butler is being challenged by former Mayor Paul Miller in the upcoming election.

Three candidates are seeking the District 3 seat on city council. Councilman Charles “Buddy” Barnwell is being challenged by Jerry Hannah and Gene Gartman.

Councilman Richard Stroman is being challenged by Jim Johnson for the District 1 council seat.

Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Contact the writer: gzaleski@timesanddemocrat.com or 803-533-5551. Check out Zaleski on Twitter at @ZaleskiTD.

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Gene Zaleski is a reporter/staff writer with The Times and Democrat.

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