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Council candidate can vote in election

LAWRENCEVILLE - Robert Jenkins can count on having at least one vote in Tuesday's election.

The Snellville city councilman was cleared to cast a ballot by the Gwinnett Board of Registrations and Elections Friday night, just five days before Election Day.

A political rival had cast doubts on Jenkins eligibility because the councilman had not informed the registration officials of a change in his address after a divorce prior to when he qualified for office.

Jenkins did submit a change of address in enough time to be properly registered for the Nov. 8 election, and Gwinnett Elections Supervisor Lynn Ledford explained that state law allows anyone to move within a city without disturbing their voter qualifications.

"It's not logical," said Joe Anderson, a former city councilman who filed the challenge.

Anderson sat at the hearing with Mayor Jerry Oberholtzer, who frequently fights with Jenkins at council meetings.

Snellville elections officials had already ruled that Jenkins could be on the ballot because Anderson had missed the deadline to file the challenge and he no longer lives in the city.

The county elections board, though, had to determine whether Jenkins could vote.

"All of the laws are aimed toward a person being able to vote," board chairwoman Joan Zellner said.

Jenkins, who had attorney and former Councilman Warren Auld on hand to represent him, said the challenge was only an attempt to derail his campaign for reelection.

"This whole thing is not a slap at me. It's a slap at every voter in the city of Snellville who has the right to choose their councilman," he said. "It's just pure malicious politics."

Jenkins faces Garry Lapides in Tuesday's City Council election.