CULLMAN, Ala. – This election season in the city of Cullman, there are numerous challengers vying for city council, mayoral and school board seats. Almost all positions are being contested, some by candidates who have run in the past and some by first-time politicians.
The Tribune will host its first round of debates today, Saturday, Aug. 8, with city council and mayoral candidates. Next Saturday, Aug. 15 will be one council seat and city school board candidates.
All city council and city school board candidates were invited to participate, as well as Cullman mayoral candidates.
The debates will be hosted at The Cullman Tribune’s office but will be closed to the public due to COVID-19 restrictions. The schedules are as follows (times may be adjusted):
Saturday, Aug. 8
Cullman City Council Place 1- 10 a.m.
- Incumbent – Andy Page
- Challenger – Brad Smith
Cullman City Council Place 2- 11:30 a.m.
- Incumbent – David Moss
- Challenger – Tony Townson
Cullman City Council Place 3- 1 p.m.
- Incumbent – Johnny Cook (Due to a scheduling conflict, Cook will be videotaped Aug. 8 and aired Aug. 15, when challenger Gwen Parker is live streamed.)
Cullman City Council Place 4- 2:30 p.m.
- Incumbent – Clint Hollingsworth
- Challenger – Steve Cummings
Cullman Mayor- 5:30 p.m.
- Incumbent – Woody Jacobs
- Challenger – Mark Bussman
There will be no Cullman City Council Place 5 debate, as incumbent Jenny Grissom is unopposed.
Saturday, Aug. 15
Cullman City School Board Place 2- 10 a.m.
- Incumbent – Chris Branham
- Challenger – John “Nick” Dumas declined to participate
Cullman City School Board Place 3- 11:30 a.m.
- Cheryl Harrison
- Scott Sessions declined to participate
Cullman City School Board Place 4
- Incumbent – Jason Neal declined to participate
- Challenger – Nathan Haynes declined to participate
Cullman City Council Place 3- 2:30 p.m.
- Challenger – Gwen Parker (Due to a scheduling conflict, incumbent Johnny Cook will be videotaped Aug. 8 and aired Aug. 15, when Parker is live streamed.)
Each candidate will have two minutes at the beginning of his or her time to greet everyone, state his or her name and position he or she is seeking and any other information. Once each candidate has spoken, the debate will begin, with Tribune senior reporter W.C. Mann moderating. Candidates will not know the questions ahead of time.
Candidates will be given 90 seconds to answer each question and 45 seconds for any follow-up or rebuttal.
Once questions are finished, each candidate will have up to three minutes to speak directly to the public. After both have finished their statements, the debate will end.
Debates will be live streamed on The Tribune’s Facebook page and also recorded and posted to www.CullmanTribune.com and The Tribune’s YouTube channel.
Candidates who choose not to participate in the debates will forfeit their time to their opponents, who will have the entire allotted time to speak and answer questions.
Following each debate, the seats and desks will be disinfected in preparation for the next set of candidates. Only the candidates, Mr. Mann and two cameramen will be allowed inside the office, in order to adhere to social distancing guidelines issued by the State of Alabama.
Cullman’s Municipal Election will take place Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2020.
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