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May primary election not necessary with no contested Sullivan municipal races

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A dozen candidates filed to run in the Sullivan municipal primary election in May, but with none of the seven races being contested, now that election won’t be necessary.

Two additional candidates filing before the noon deadline on Friday were both Republicans — Randall Denham, city council District 2, and Forrest Metcalf, city council District 4.

Denham is owner of Country Wide Service Center, Sullivan, while Metcalf is retired.

The Sullivan County Election Board mentioned during its meeting Thursday afternoon — less than 24 hours before the Friday filing deadline — there was a strong possibility of not needing a primary election this year. And that came to pass.

Democrats filled all seven available primary slots: Clint Lamb (mayor); D. Sue Pitts (clerk-treasurer); John Ellington (city council District 1); Gene Bonham (city council District 2); Roger Smith (city council District 3); Scott Brown (city council District 4); and Tom McClanahan (city council At-Large).

All are incumbents except Smith and McClanahan. The other two incumbents, Steve Martindale (at-large) and Raymond Pirtle (District 3), did not file for re-election.

Republicans, five in all, filing were: Josh Smith (mayor); Carl Foster (city council District 1); Denham (city council District 2); Johnnie Kristler (city council District 3); and Metcalf (city council District 4).

No GOP candidates filed for clerk-treasurer and city council At-Large. 

So barring any changes — a withdrawal or a candidate selected to fill a ballot vacancy — the only contested races in the November general election will be for mayor and four of the five city council seats.

The election board also set the early voting dates to begin April 22 during its Thursday meeting, but that too is now a moot point.

Meanwhile, persons filing for clerk-treasurer and council seats in the towns of Farmersburg, Shelburn, Dugger, Hymera, Carlisle and Merom still have until Aug. 1 to declare their candidacy for nomination by a town convention in a town with a population of less than 3,500.

Those races, as will the Sullivan city races, will be decided in the November general election.

The lone candidate to file for a town election prior to Friday was Kaleb Westbrook, a Republican, seeking re-election to the Merom Town Council. 

Filing on Friday morning was June Shacklett, a Republican, seeking re-election as Merom clerk-treasurer.


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