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Wagstaff for Soil & Water Board? Or Daffy Duck?

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Former Durham City Councilwoman and Durham Public Schools Board member Jackie Wagstaff (right) was seen working the polls during early voting, presenting herself as a write-in candidate for Soil and Water Conservation District Board of Supervisors.

Two positions are up for re-elections, with two incumbents running unopposed.

Wagstaff did not respond to Bull's Eye's voicemail requesting comment, but one of the incumbents she is challenging, Ray Eurquhart, did have something to say.

"It's just a back-end way of doing things," said Eurquhart, (below right) who has been on the Soil and Water board since 1994. "Her thing is just being a big shot."

Soil and Water Conservation programs began in the wake of the 1930s Dust Bowl; Durham has had a local program since 1939, to provide technical assistance to landowners and promote conservation to the general public. Stream restoration and sediment and erosion control are among its current priorities, in town as well as in the country.

Eurquhart and fellow incumbent Robert Rosenthal filed for re-election this fall; no one filed against them.

"I was trying to retire," said Eurquhart, who is also co-chairman of the Rolling Hills/Southside Steering Committee and a member of the city-county Environmental Affairs Board. "But nobody didn't ever come forward.

"We certainly want some people there who can work with the staff and work with famers and work with developers," he said.

Elections for the Soil and Water District Board are typically low-key affairs, and typically draw a great many write-in votes: 676 in 2008, 708 in 2006.

Durham County Board of Elections results show that among the write-ins, votes went to John Muir, Mike Nifong, Durham Voter # 642520, Clint Eastwood, Homer Simpson, Eugene Debs, Smoky Bear, Humpty Dumpty, Muddy Waters, Greg Fishel and Daffy Duck (left).

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About the blogger

Jim Wise is a Durham News/N&O reporter and columnist who follows city and county government land-use and neighborhood issues. He's author of "Durham: A Bull City Story" and "Durham Tales: The Morris Street Maple, the Plastic Cow, the Durham Day That Was and More ... "