The newly-created District 14 covers portions of Bartow, including Cartersville, and Cherokee counties, and at least six candidates want to replace Loudermilk.
The hearing is apparently to determine if the youngest of the crowded field, Laughridge, 25, meets residency requirements to seek the office. He reportedly faces several challenges to his District 14 candidacy.
Bartow County Elections Supervisor Joseph Kirk said his office today received notice of the Oct. 10 hearing at 9 a.m. at the Office of State Administrative Hearings, 230 Peachtree St. NW, Suite 850, in Atlanta.
According to the secretary of state, candidates for state senate "must be a resident of the district which he or she represents, and at the time of his or her election must have been a resident of the territory embraced within such district for at least one year preceding such time."
Voting records show Laughridge cast a ballot at the Kingston precinct in District 52 in November 2012, and last month changed his address with the Bartow County Voter Registration and Elections office to a Peeples Valley Road home in District 14.
Kirk said Laughridge's previous Reynolds Road address in Kingston would not have been in District 14 prior to last year's reapportionment and redistricting.
In a statement, Laughridge said he has been renovating a home in District 14—apparently the Peeples Valley Road address—and has been living elsewhere in the district.
On his notice of candidacy, which Patch obtained from the Secretary of State's office, Laughridge lists a third address—326 Dock 3 Captains Walk Drive in Cartersville.
Bartow County Tax Assessors' online records indicate Captains Walk, located off Red Top Mountain Road and Websters Ferry Landing—and the land surrounding it on the banks of Allatoona Reservoir—is owned by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
Laughridge's statement isn't clear on where he's been living, and doesn't mention any type of house boat on Lake Allatoona.
If allowed to compete for the seat, Laughridge faces challenges from four other Republicans. One Democrat has qualified for the post. In addition to Laughridge, candidates who have qualified are:
- Republican Nicole Ebbeskotte of Woodstock,
- Democrat Christopher G. Nesmith of Adairsville,
- Republican Dwight Pullen of Canton,
- Republican Dean Sheridan of Acworth in southwest Cherokee County and
- Republican Bruce Thompson of White.
The winner of the special election will represent portions of eastern Bartow, western Cherokee and a very small portion of northeast Cobb County in the Georgia General Assembly.
Loudermilk last month resigned to focus on his bid to become the next U.S. Congressman from Georgia. He is running for the Georgia District 11 seat to replace Phil Gingrey, who is running for the U.S. Senate.
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