Members of the Columbia County Board of Elections met Wednesday to begin wading through the applications for the vacant elections director’s position.
There were 45 applications for the post turned in by the Jan. 25 deadline, said Board Chairman Larry Long. The position opened after the retirement at the end of the year of Deborah Marshall, who was unable to return to work after April surgery on a malignant brain tumor.
The process of vetting all those applications will be slow, Long said.
“We are deliberating on each application, and with this many applications it’s going to take a little bit of time,” he said.
He wouldn’t describe any of the applicants, but said in general many of them seem very qualified for the position that pays up to $80,000 per year.
“We see a range in there on the applications, but just filling Debbie’s shoes will be tough,” Long said. “We can’t replace her, but we can put someone else in the position.”
Long said board members plan to meet in the next couple of days to continue reviewing the applications, and to start interviews in the next week or so. They hope to name a successor by the end of February.
The board so far is scheduled to coordinate three elections this year: a special election March 19 in Grovetown to fill the seat of Jennifer Jones, who recently resigned from city council, and scheduled elections this fall in Harlem and Grovetown.