Two new faces will be joining the Appomattox County Board of Supervisors next year, ousting one-term incumbents in their respective districts.
Bryan Moody and Chad Millner were both looking to secure their second terms as Wreck Island and Falling River district supervisors, respectively.
Newcomer Trevor Hipps took the Wreck Island District seat instead, taking 71.2% of the vote compared to Moody’s 28.6%. John Hinkle unseated Millner by a smaller margin, winning over 54.6% of voters versus Millner’s 45.3%.
Both newcomers stressed governmental transparency after the Board of Supervisors greenlit development of a controversial trash transfer station off of U.S. 460 near Concord in February.
Hipps, a supervisor at a mental health clinic, helped to organize a neighborhood group that voiced their opposition along every step of the approval process.
He said he was “humbled” by his support from Wreck Island voters, many of whom he got to know better while spreading word about the transfer station project.
“I’m very encouraged,” he said. “I think that it serves as a referendum on what people thought about the decision with the transfer station: you had two candidates that were outspoken about the transfer station and they both won.”
Hinkle, a 23-year veteran of the Army National Guard, former auditor and budget analyst, said his platform was rooted in listening to the people. He called for paying off county debt faster, supporting small businesses and protecting personal property rights.
He also decried the county’s real estate tax rate, pointing out that it’s 10% higher than in surrounding counties.
The News & Advance could not reach him on election night.
Both candidates had spoken to the benefits of having some fresh perspective on the Appomattox Board of Supervisors. Regardless of the history with the transfer station, Hipps said he’s ready to work for the common good of residents.
“I hope that, with two new board members, the other three guys are on board just to work together to advance the county,” he said. “Any differences we have, those can be put aside.”
Incumbents also lost their two contested seats on the Appomattox School Board. In the Appomattox River District, Wyatt Torrence successfully challenged Wendy Hageman Smith by getting 62% of votes compared to 37.8% For the Wreck Island District, Jason Wells took Cindy Hall’s seat by a margin of 72.1% of votes to 27.5%.
In the county treasurer’s race, contested by two new faces, Victoria Phelps took 76.4% of votes and Michael Gott took 23.4%.
Rachel Mahoney covers courts for The News & Advance. Reach her at (434) 385-5554.