Hines announces re-election bid

Ward II Albany City Commissioner Ivey Hines announces Tuesday that he will seek re-election during the Nov. 5 municipal election.

Ward II Albany City Commissioner Ivey Hines announces Tuesday that he will seek re-election during the Nov. 5 municipal election.

ALBANY, Ga. -- One of three Albany city commissioners whose seats are up for re-election on Nov. 5 formally announced plans Tuesday to retain his spot on the commission.

Ward II Commissioner Ivey Hines, who won a special election to finish the unexpired term of current Albany Mayor Dorothy Hubbard in 2011, announced his re-election plans on the patio of the downtown Government Center as a group of supporters looked on.

Medical transport specialist Bobby Coleman announced on April 25 he would challenge Hines for the Ward II seat, and Albany State University marketing director Demetrius Love announced on May 14 plans to qualify for the election.

Hines, an information technology specialist at Marine Corps Logistics Base-Albany and a pastor, claimed the Ward II seat by 44 votes over Melissa Strother in a controversial election that featured the disqualification of candidate Cheryl Calhoun. Calhoun, a school bus driver for the Dougherty County School System, had sought to qualify to run in the 2011 Ward I race against incumbent Jon Howard, but city officials misread GIS information and declared she lived in Ward II.

After Calhoun qualified to run in Ward II and started campaigning for the seat, Elections officials discovered that she actually did live in Ward I and declared her ineligible for the Ward II race. Even though signs declaring Calhoun ineligible were posted at voting sites in the ward on election day, she received some 204 votes, spurring Strother to challenge the election results.

Three months after Hines was sworn in as the Ward II commissioner, Superior Court Judge Joe Bishop dismissed Strothers' challenge on the basis of a procedural error.

While challengers have surfaced in the other two contested City Commission races, neither incumbent -- Christopher Pike in Ward III and Bob Langstaff in Ward V -- has officially announced re-election plans. Pike is expected to seek a second term in office, while Langstaff said Tuesday he's still considering whether to run for a fourth four-year term.

Businesswoman B.J. Fletcher and Calhoun have announced plans to run against Pike in Ward III, while businessman Lane Rosen told The Albany Herald last week he will challenge for the Ward V seat.

Qualifying for the three contested commission seats will be conducted Aug. 26-30 at the Elections office on the second floor of the Government Center.