By TERRI HARBER and
Don Williams and Steve Bogart will face off in the Nov. 6 general election for the office of Baker County Justice of the Peace.
They were the top two vote-getters among the seven candidates in Tuesday's primary election, according to results from the Baker County Clerk's Office.
To gain the position outright in the primary, one candidate needed to get at least 50 percent, plus one vote, of the total votes cast.
Williams, with 1,275 votes out of 4,079 cast, was the top finisher. But his 31 percent share was well short of the minimum to win the election outright Tuesday.
Bogart received 1,030 votes, 25 percent.
Roger Coles finished third with 615 votes, followed by Floyd Morgan (397), Michael Downing (379), Gail Duman (319) and James Miles Cornelius (54).
Williams said this morning he is pleased to have advanced to the general election.
He has been serving as a pro-tem justice of the peace since July, 2011.
"It's been a good fit," Williams said. "I've received lots of positive comments from people in the courtroom."
Bogart said that although he had hoped to win the election outright Tuesday, he understood that with seven candidates in the field, such an achievement was "probably unrealistic."
"I'm grateful for the support I got," Bogart said. "I want to commend all the candidates. They're all good people willing to do public service."
Voters on Tuesday passed by large margins the extensions of two property tax levies, one to pay for noxious weed control, the other to control mosquitoes.
A flurry of ballot returns on Monday and Tuesday boosted voter turnout to 44.7 percent - up from 33.2 percent on Monday morning.
Complete results are available online at www.bakercounty.org. Click on "primary election - May 15, 2012."