by Bill Mardis
Filing petitions for election for local offices continues at a rather slow pace as the deadline looms less than two weeks away.
There was some significant activity since our report last week. David Moss, police chief at Ferguson, became the sixth candidate to file for jailer and Billy Bob Hardy, starting center on the 1986 state basketball champion Pulaski County High School Maroons, filed for 4th District magistrate.
Moss is in a crowded field of candidates hoping to unseat incumbent Jailer Mike Harris. Previously filing are Michael Hall, Anthony McCollum, Rodney Dick, Gary Ed Cromer and Rodney Stevens. Harris said he will seek reelection, but as of early Wednesday he had not filed.
Hardy, a retired supervisor at the Kentucky Department of Highways’ Sign Shop, will attempt to unseat Glenn Maxey who has filed for reelection. Both are Republicans.
T.W. Todd, completing a fourth term as property valuation administrator, said Thursday night he has filed his petition of election for a fifth term.
Justin Mikel Smith has withdrawn as a candidate for Somerset City Council in Ward 1 and filed for the Ward 4 seat. He said in an e-mail to the Commonwealth Journal that the GIS (Geographic Information Systems) map on the city’s website incorrectly showed he lived in Ward 1.
Already filed in Ward 4 are Joseph Wiles and Betty Barnes Cook. Smith makes three, meaning a primary will be conducted May 20 with the two top vote-getters advancing to the general election in November. Incumbent Jimmy Eastham had not filed as of Wednesday morning. If he does, four candidates would be involved in the Ward 4 primary with two surviving.
A primary has already developed in the contest for mayor of Somerset. When Jim Rutherford, a Ward 1 city councilor and retired Somerset police officer, filed last week he became the third candidate in Somerset’s mayoral contest. Already filed are incumbent mayor Eddie Girdler and businessman Alan Keck. The two top vote-getters in the primary will advance to the November general election.
Voting in a mayoral or ward primary election is citywide. In other words, all eligible voters, including independents, in Somerset would be able to help select two mayoral candidates and two Ward 4 candidates to compete in November. There will be citywide primaries in any of the city’s 12 wards where more than two candidates file.
Nobody has filed as of Wednesday morning in Ward 1 to succeed Jim Rutherford who is vacating the city council seat by seeking the mayor’s office. Others who have filed for city council include: Incumbent Linda Stringer in Ward 2; incumbent Jerry Wheeldon in Ward 3; incumbent Jerry Girdler in Ward 5; incumbent Mike New in Ward 6; incumbent Donna Hunley in Ward 7; incumbent John Ricky Minton in Ward 8; incumbent Jim Mitchell in Ward 9; incumbent Pat Bourne and Tim Rutherford in Ward 10; and incumbent Jerry Burnett in Ward 11. As of early Wednesday nobody had filed in Ward 12. Tom Eastham is the incumbent.
Candidates for county offices as of early Wednesday are:
• County Judge-executive –– Steve Kelley and incumbent Barty Bullock, both Republicans. Democrat Rodney Casada said he is considering entering the race for county judge but has not filed.
• County Clerk –– Tim Price, Linda Burnett, Josh Anderson and Jim Reams, all Republicans. They are seeking to succeed Ralph Troxtell who has announced his retirement at the end of this year.
• County Attorney –– incumbent Martin Hatfield, a Republican.
• Sheriff –– incumbent Todd Wood and Greg W. Speck, both Republicans.
• Coroner –– Clyde Strunk, Shane D. Haste, Scott Miller and incumbent Charles E. “Chuck” Godbey, all Republicans.
• Surveyor –- Incumbent Anthony Glenn Thompson.
• 1st District Magistrate –– Incumbent Jason Turpen, a Republican.
• 1st District Constable –– Denny Allen Britt and Danny Weddle, both Republicans. Incumbent James Foster has not filed.
• 2nd District Magistrate –– Incumbent Mike L. Wilson, Larry Hines, Kennith Decker, Dennis L. Wilson, Barry W. Flatt and James (Jamie) Warren, all Republicans.
• 2nd District Constable –- Clyde Molen, Carl David Jones, James Huesman, Christopher Roberts and Roy Chumbley, all Republicans. Incumbent Shane D. Haste is a candidate for coroner.
• 3rd District Magistrate –- Incumbent Tommy Barnett and Jimmy Wheeldon, both Republicans.
• 3rd District Constable –- Travis Gillilan and Brad Wilson, both Republicans. Incumbent Richard Gene Palmer has not filed.
• 4th District Magistrate –– (aforementioned Hardy and Maxey)
• 4th District Constable –- James Mayfield, G.D. Doug Baker and James Glover, all Republicans. Incumbent Richard L. New has not filed.
• 5th District Magistrate –- Incumbent Mike Strunk, Douglas Hughes and Penny Jo Johnson, all Republicans, and Thomas D. Stevens III (Bud), a Democrat.
• 5th District Constable –– incumbent Michael “Wallace” Wallace and Kenneth Hembree, both Republicans.
Statewide and multi-county candidates who have filed at the Kentucky Secretary of States office are:
• For U.S. Senator –– Incumbent Mitch McConnell, Louisville, Matt Bevin, Louisville, and Gurley L. Martin, Owensboro, all Republicans; and Alison Lundergan Grimes, Lexington, Tom Recktenwald, Louisville, and Burrel Charles Farnsley, Louisville, all Democrats.
• For U.S. Representative, 5th Congressional District –– Billy Ray Wilson, London, a Democrat. Incumbent Republican Hal Rogers said he will seek reelection but has not filed.
• For state representative, 52nd District –– Incumbent Ken Upchurch, Monticello.
• For state representative, 80th District –– Incumbent David Meade.
• For state representative, 83rd District –– Kentucky House Republican floor leader Jeff Hoover, Jamestown, has announced his intention to seek reelection. However, Hoover, as of early Wednesday, had not filed his petition for election according to the Kentucky secretary of state’s website.
• For state representative, 85th District –– Incumbent Tommy Turner.
The 24th House District, formerly extending into five northern Pulaski County precincts, because of realignment is no longer a part of Pulaski County. Now divided among four House districts, Pulaski County is represented in Frankfort by Upchurch, Hoover, Meade and Turner.
Chris Girdler, elected last year as state senator from the 15th Senatorial District, is not up for reelection next year. He succeeded the retiring Vernie McGaha.
Judicial candidates who have filed with the Secretary of State are:
• For circuit judge, 28th Judicial Circuit, 1st Division ––David A. Tapp.
• For circuit judge, 28th Judicial Circuit, 2nd Division –– Jeffrey T. Burdette.
• For Family Court judge, 28th Judicial Circuit, 3rd Division –– Marcus Vanover.
• For district judge, 28th Judicial Circuit, 1st Division –– Jeffrey Scott Lawless.
• For district judge, 28th Judicial Circuit, 2nd Division –– Katie Gregory Wood.
Tapp, Burdette, Lawless and Wood are incumbents. Vanover was recently appointed Family Court judge, succeeding retiring Walter Maguire.
• For court of appeals judge, 3rd Appellate District –– Incumbent Michael O. Caperton, 1st Division, and James H. Lambert, 2nd Division.
Filing deadline for most local offices is January 28. Independents, small cities and school board candidates have until August 12 to file. The primary election is May 20 and the general election is November 4.