Special elections on Folly Beach, Kiawah Island happening Tuesday

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- Voters in several Lowcountry beach communities will go to the polls Tuesday to cast ballots in special elections.

Here is what voters need to know:

Where are special elections happening?

City of Folly Beach

Voters living on Folly Beach will participate in a special election for city council on Tuesday.

Skip Fink and Jody Lynn Rogers are running to replace Councilman Eddie Ellis, who recently announced his retirement after 16 years of serving the city.

The newly-elected councilmember will serve the remainder of Ellis’ term which expires in November 2025.

Town of Kiawah Island

Just down the coast, Kiawah Island residents will have a pair of races to decide on Tuesday.

Councilman Brad Belt and Mayor Pro Tempore Michael Heidingsfelder are both vying to become the town’s next mayor following the early resignation of Mayor John Labriola.

Labriola announced in January that he would resign after serving in the role for three and a half years.

Belt said the town is at an “inflection point,” particularly related to development, and that he is running to restore public “faith and confidence” in the local administration.

“We are at an infection point in the life of our island and there are extraordinary opportunities and challenges to shaping our future,” Belt wrote in a letter declaring his candidacy. “We need to be more focused and diligent than ever before to best protect our collective interests while working collaboratively with both internal and external stakeholders to preserve what is unique and special about Kiawah Island and enhance our quality of life.”

He further committed to working with the Kiawah Island Community Association (KICA) on public safety concerns, beach management, development projects, and traffic mitigation.

Heidingsfelder has advocated for a “thoughtful, comprehensive, and more community-centric vision” for the island’s future.

His platform is centered around five key themes: communication and outreach, collaboration and unity, setting boundaries for developers, improving public safety and security, and conservation.

“I believe that our joint community wants a meaningful, transparent and productive resolution of these challenges without harming our neighborhoods,” Heidingsfelder wrote. “I promise the community that I will do my very best to help preserve and enhance life on Kiawah and foster collaboration between the community and our governing bodies.”

There is also a town council seat up for grabs on Kiawah Island. Voters will choose between town Planning Commission member, E. Luke Farrell, and retired management consultant, Peter C. Stockman.

Where can I vote?

Registered Kiawah Island voters can cast a ballot at the Sandcastle at 1 Shipwatch Road between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

Registered Folly Beach voters can visit Folly Beach Baptist Church from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. to cast a ballot.

Anyone in line by 7 p.m. will be allowed to vote.

Will I need a photo ID to vote?

Yes. When voting in person, you will be asked to show one of the following at the polling location:

  • SC Driver’s License
  • SC Department of Motor Vehicles ID Card
  • SC Voter Registration Card with Photo
  • Federal Military ID
  • US Passport

Am I registered to vote?

You can check your voter registration status by visiting scvotes.gov and selecting “Check my Voter Registration.” You must enter your name, county, date of birth, and the last four digits of your social security number.

How can I find election results?

News 2 will provide the most up-to-date election results on counton2.com once polls are closed.

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Author: Sophie Brams