Joel Smith, the executive general manager for the Hendrick Hoover Auto Mall, today withdrew from the race for Hoover City Council Place 4.
Smith said in an email that he had to suspend his campaign due to some recent news but did not say what that news was. He said that all is well with himself and his family but that he needed to make this difficult decision.
Hoover City Clerk Margie Handley said Smith turned in an official letter withdrawing his name from the race. However, the ballots already have been printed with his name on them and will not be reprinted, Handley said.
Election officials at the polling places will strike through his name on the ballots on election day, and the counting machines will be programmed to not count any votes for him, she said. About 40 absentee ballots already have been mailed out, and Handley said she would email absentee voters who were mailed ballots prior to today to inform them about the change.
There is nothing that can be done about any absentee voters who have already put their ballots in the mail or voted in person at the Hoover Municipal Center, Handley said.
With Smith out of the race, that leaves Russet Woods resident Michael Holt and Loch Ridge resident Mike Shaw as the only candidates seeking Hoover Council Place 4. Jack Natter, who currently is in Place 4, decided not to seek re-election.
This post was updated at 3:53 p.m. with additional information from City Clerk Margie Handley.