Funderburg elected mayor of Pell City
by David Atchison
PELL CITY — The third time was the charm for Joe Funderburg, who decisively won Tuesday’s runoff election for mayor against Adam Stocks.

Funderburg won the runoff with 1,015 unofficial votes, almost 300 votes more than his opponent. Stocks received 752 unofficial votes in the mayor’s contest.

“I’m glad this thing is over,” Funderburg said after Tuesday night’s election results were announced. “It’s been a long day.”

This was Funderburg’s third consecutive run at the mayor’s office.

He said he really didn’t know what to expect, but felt he had good support heading into Tuesday’s runoff against Stocks, who served as the city’s full-time mayor from 2004-2008.

Stocks defeated Funderburg in 2004, and current Mayor Bill Hereford defeated him in 2008, but it was Funderburg’s turn to celebrate this time.

“I’m real proud of the people of Pell City, turning out like they did,” he said.

City officials said 1,767 residents voted in the runoff election Tuesday, only about 200 votes less than in the municipal elections in August.

“It was an exceptional turnout for a runoff,” Hereford said.

Funderburg said he looks forward to working with the new council and city manager.

“Like I said before, I’m going to be a full-time mayor,” he said. “I’m expecting good things for Pell City.”

Funderburg said he looks forward to making a smooth transition in the new city government.

It is a different situation for the newly elected mayor. Even though Funderburg vowed to be a full-time mayor, the mayor’s position is not a full-time paying position. The full-time city manager now handles the day-to-day operation of the city, and the council president makes recommendations to the council at council meetings, not the mayor.

The mayor does have veto power on certain issues, City Manager Patrick Draper said.

In the District 4 council race, Sharon Thomas narrowly beat Greg Jacobik in that runoff race. Thomas had 300 votes, while Jacobik finished with 234 votes.

“I’m very excited,” Thomas said after the election results were announced. “I’m very anxious to start working with the city, representing District 4. I hope to see a lot of growth in the next four years.”

Thomas said she hopes the city can move forward with building a new library.

“I’m very appreciative to the people who came out and voted for me,” she said.

In August, council members Jay Jenkins, James McGowan and Dot Wood won their respective district races outright. Terry Templin will serve as the new District 5 council representative, winning the majority of votes in the August election.

The Pell City Council will convene at noon Tuesday to canvass the election results from Tuesday night’s runoff. The meeting is in the council chambers at City Hall and is open to the public.

Contact David Atchison at datchison@dailyhome.com.

© 2012