Commonwealth Journal

January 29, 2014

124 file for May Primaries

Several races expected to be hotly contested

by Bill Mardis
Commonwealth Journal

Somerset —

Filing deadline for candidates seeking local and regional offices subject to the May 20 primary elections passed at 4 p.m. yesterday and the three-month filing period produced a total of 124 candidates.  There are very few surprises but candidates did drop some fodder on which political analysts can chew:
✔ Republicans are whispering about Rodney Casada, former chair of the Pulaski County Democratic Party, getting in the judge-executive’s race. The local chiropractor, if he were to win, would be the third Democratic county judge since the Civil War. Some local political observers say privately Casada can cross party lines. Republicans don’t talk about it, but behind the security of a voting booth curtain, they have been known to mark an “X” under the rooster. Proof: Long-serving sheriff Gilmore Phelps, four-term county judge John W. Garner and Kenny Isaacs, former 1st District magistrate, all Democrats.
✔ Greg W. Speck, a retired com-mander of Kentucky State Police Post 15 at Columbia, is challenging incum-bent Todd Wood for Pulaski County sheriff. Almost at the last minute, Bill Scott, 312 Plantation Avenue, Somerset, got in the sheriff’s race. A political newcomer, Scott, 48, is a recent graduate of Somerset Com-munity College and a published author. A Republican, Scott said he is making applications for employment and filed for the sheriff’s job.
✔  There is standing room only in the contest for jailer. Nine candidates, obviously encouraged by a now-settled civil rights case, will try to unseat incumbent Mike Harris.
✔ Somerset Mayor Eddie Girdler is being challenged by City Councilor Jim Rutherford and businessman Alan Keck. With the specter of unified government casting a shadow on the mayoral race, a nonpartisan primary May 20 will send the two top vote-getters to the November 4 general election. 
✔ A citywide primary will also be held in the city’s 4th Ward where Joseph Wiles, son of former Mayor JP Wiles, and two others are challenging incumbent James C. (Jimmy) Eastham. The two top vote-getters will advance to November. Council races also developed in Wards 1, 2, 6 and 10, but in each of these four wards there are only two candidates and winners will be decided in November.
Some things that might have happened but didn’t:
✔ Former county judge-executive Darrell BeShears, who dilly-dallied for a long time about another run for the office, said earlier this week he would not file. He didn’t. “I know when it’s time to step aside,” he commented. BeShears, who lifted Pulaski County out of poverty by shepherding a 1-cent occupational tax, served four terms in the county judge’s office.
✔ Local insurance man Rick Girdler, who expressed interest, didn’t get into the judge-executive’s race. Neither did George Flynn, Pulaski County’s veteran circuit clerk from South of the River whose name was tossed about for the top job in the courthouse. He said “ ... my friends want me to stay as their circuit clerk.”
✔ The five seats on Pulaski Fiscal Court didn’t attract as many candidates as four years ago. Only a total of 24 candidates filed this time compared with 51 in 2010, the first election after magistrates doubled their individual salaries from $15,000 to $30,000.
Following are candidates for various local offices:
• Pulaski County judge-executive: Steve Kelley, Barty Bullock, both Republicans, and Rodney Casada, a Democrat.
• Pulaski County clerk: Tim Price, Linda Burnett, Josh Anderson and Jim Reams, all Republicans. Filing papers were picked up by another possible candidate for clerk but that person didn’t file.
• Pulaski County jailer: Michael Hall, Anthony McCollum, Rodney Dick, Gary Ed Cromer, Rodney Stevens, David Moss, Mike Harris, Rodney Baker, Eric Henderson and Jeff R. Burton, all Republicans.
• Pulaski County attorney: Martin Hatfield, a Republican.
• Pulaski County sheriff: Greg W. Speck, Todd Wood and Bill Scott, all Republicans.
• Pulaski County coroner: Clyde Strunk, Shane D. Haste, Scott Miller, Charles E. “Chuck” Godbey and Michael K. Noon, all Republicans.
• Pulaski County property valuation administrator: T.W. Todd, a Republican.
• Pulaski County surveyor: Anthony Glenn Thompson, a Republican.
• 1st District magistrate: Jason Turpen, Stacy W. Halcomb, Allen Adcock and Judith Lynne Martini, all Republicans.
• 1st District constable: Denny Allen Britt, Danny Weddle, Nicholas F. Crummie and James R. Foster, all Republicans.
• 2nd District magistrate: Larry Hines, Kennith Decker, Dennis L. Wilson, Barry W. Flatt, Mike L. Wilson and James (Jamie) Warren, all Republicans, and Michael Brent Redmond, a Democrat.
• 2nd District constable: Clyde Molen, Carl David Jones, James Huesman, Christopher Roberts, Roy Chumbley and Jamie Meece, all Republicans.
• 3rd District magistrate: Jimmy Wheeldon, Tommy Barnett and Bob Lunsford, all Republicans, and Deanna Wahlman, a Democrat. 
• 3rd District constable: Travis Gillilan, Brad Wilson and John A. Gallagher, all Republicans.
• 4th District magistrate: Glenn Maxey, Billy Bob Hardy and Ronald “Rooney” Turner, all Republicans.
• 4th District constable: James Mayfield, G.D. Doug Baker, James Glover, Ollie Phelps, Richard L. New, Anthony W. (Tony) Deprato and John “Tim” Coffey, all Republicans.
• 5th District magistrate: Thomas D. Stevens III (Bud), a Democrat, and Mike Strunk, Douglas Hughes, Penny Jo Johnson, Jack Anderson and Jayson Lee Flynn, all Republicans.
• 5th District constable: Michael “Wally” Wallace and Kenneth Hembree, both Republicans.
• Somerset mayor (nonpartisan): Alan Keck, Eddie Girdler and Jim Rutherford.
• Somerset City Council (nonpartisan):
Ward 1: M. Allan Coomer and David C. Burdine; Ward 2: Linda Stringer and Brian Dalton; Ward 3: Jerry Wheeldon; Ward 4: Joseph Wiles, Betty Barnes Cook, Justin Mikel Smith and James C. (Jimmy) Eastham; Ward 5: Jerry Girdler; Ward 6: Charles Mike New and Joseph B. Brinegar; Ward 7: Donna Hunley; Ward 8: John Ricky Minton; Ward 9: Jim Mitchell; Ward 10: James P. Bourne and Tim Rutherford; Ward 11: Jerry Burnett; and Ward 12: Tom Eastham.
Science Hill mayor (nonpartisan): William J. “Bill” Dick. Filing deadline for Dick and other small city candidates is August 12.
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, James Bradley Copas, Lexington, Shawna Sterling, Sharpsburg, and Chris Payne, Salvisa, all Republicans; and Alison Lundergan Grimes, Lexington, Tom Recktenwald, Louisville, Gregory Brent Leichty, Louisville, and Burrel Charles Farnsley, Louisville, all Democrats. Gurley L. Martin, Owensboro, a Republican, has withdrawn as a candidate.
  • For U.S. Representative, 5th Congressional District –– Billy Ray Wilson, London, and Kenneth S. Stepp, Manchester, both Democrats, and Incumbent Republican Hal Rogers.
 • For state representative, 52nd District –– Incumbent Ken Upchurch, Monticello, and Jessica A. Burke, Stearns.
 • For state representative, 80th District –– Incumbent David Meade, Stanford.
 • For state representative, 83rd District –– Kentucky House Republican floor leader Jeff Hoover, Jamestown.
 • For state representative, 85th District ––  Incumbent Tommy Turner, Somerset.
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.
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 and Bruce Wayne Singleton.
  • 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, London, and Debra Hembree Lambert, Mt. Vernon, both 1st Division; and James H. Lambert, Mt. Vernon and Paul F. Henderson, Somerset, both 2nd Division.
Candidates who filed at the Kentucky secretary of state’s office were taken from the website about 4:30 p.m. yesterday. There is a possibility a late filer was not on the list at that time.
 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.