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Lula will swear in new councilman, sets fees for November election
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Matthew Hamby is running for Lula City Council.

Lula has called off its March 19 special election after only one person qualified for the open City Council seat.

Matthew Hamby was the sole qualifier, and City Manager Dennis Bergin said no one applied to be a write-in candidate. Hamby will be sworn in soon depending on scheduling, Bergin said.

Bergin said City Attorney Joey Homans notified the Georgia Secretary of State office about the city’s plans not to hold an election.

Hamby, who works for the city of Gainesville as its deputy chief financial officer, has lived in Lula for 12 years and told The Times earlier in January that he hopes Lula keeps its small-town feel in the face of growth in East Hall.

Hamby will replace former Councilman Vince Evans, who resigned in August.

On Nov. 5, three City Council seats will be up for a vote. The positions for Wards 1, 4 and 5, which will be occupied by Hamby, Garnett Smith and Lamb Griffin, will be on the ballot. Hamby is finishing Evans’ unexpired term.

Qualifying fees for the November election were set at Tuesday’s City Council meeting and will be $100. State rules dictate that qualifying fees are calculated as 3 percent of the previous year’s salary for the position. When Hamby qualified for the position earlier in January, the fee was only $35 because the March 19 election would have only filled the seat for the rest of the year.

The three positions on the November ballot will be for four-year terms beginning in 2020.

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