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Holston, Barrett to run in Georgetown election

Penuel Barrett, left, and Robert Holston are running for the ward four town council seat in Georgetown.

A Georgetown councilman will be challenged for his seat Aug. 15.

Robert Holston was appointed to the town council’s fourth ward seat in March 2016, after David Anderson resigned for personal reasons. Holston was uncontested when he sought another term in 2018.

This year, Penuel Barrett is running against him.

The terms of Mayor Bill West and Councilwoman Chris Lecates are also up this year.

West is running uncontested.

Lecates, the ward three representative, has chosen not to seek another term.

Ward three candidate Angela Townsend has no challenger. Townsend previously served as the ward three council member from 2002 to 2005.

If you go

What: Georgetown Town Council election

Where: Georgetown Town Hall, 39 The Circle

When: Saturday, Aug. 15, 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Register to vote before Friday, Aug. 14, at the Sussex County Department of Elections, located at 119 N. Race St. in Georgetown. The deadline to file for absentee voting has passed.

You must be a resident of Georgetown to vote, but residents from all wards (not just ward four) can vote in the election.

Robert Holston

Robert “Bob” Holston, 73, has lived in Georgetown for 11 years. He is retired from NASA at Wallops Island, where he worked in shipping and receiving for 45 years.

Holston is a U.S. Army veteran. He served on the board at Cinderberry Estates for four years. He is second vice commander at American Legion Post #8 in Georgetown, which handles emergency ambulance services for the area. 

Why do you want to be a town councilman?

“I really support Mayor West. He’s the backbone of us. He’s the real worker. I’ve just got a lot of respect for him and I help him as much as I can. I take care of military things. I support the military and police – if you don’t like them you don’t like me. I love Georgetown”

What do you see as the biggest issue facing Georgetown?

“We have a lot of traffic and a lot of homeless around here. A lot of people just don’t care about the government. When we have meetings there’s nobody there unless something gets out that we’re gonna vote on. There’s trying to get businesses to Georgetown, which the mayor has done. We’ve kept taxes down, which I hope we can keep on doing.”

Penuel Barrett

Penuel Barrett, 46, has lived in Georgetown for 24 years. He’s the general sales manager at First State Chevrolet.

Barrett was the longest acting fire chief for the Georgetown Fire Company and now serves as deputy chief. He’s served on the Georgetown Little League board of directors for 20 years and on the town planning commission for the last three years. He’s a member of the Sussex County Fire Chiefs Association and has served as their president. 

Why do you want to be a town councilman?

“I’ve been volunteering a lot of my time to help the emergency services of Georgetown and I think some of my ideas will benefit the town, as far as helping them save money. Plus, generating more business and hopefully helping raise property values, because right now I’m not sure we’re headed in the right direction, as far as property values are concerned.”

What do you see as the biggest issue facing Georgetown?

“We’ve gotta get the police contract squared away, that’s one issue. They’re definitely a big part of Georgetown and we’ve gotta figure out a way to close that contract up. Overcrowding, that’s an issue we’ve had for years. More than one family in one house. We’ve got to start working on it now. With the fire company we’ve always had this issue. Now the virus hits and we still have an issue.

“Another issue is the comprehensive plan. It’s supposed to be updated every five years. It’s been 10 years. That should’ve been handled. The mayor’s done a good job but I think he needs some help. I don’t think he can do it all himself.”