While the filing period ended Saturday at midnight, there may still be late-filing candidates who used the U.S. Postal Service to file candidacy papers for the May 10 primary. Those names, if indeed there are any, may not be known until mid-week.
As of Wednesday afternoon, as this newspaper went to press, a few more candidates had filed.
The county ballot will include the circuit judge, the District 3/Oceana areas county commission seat (currently held by Larry Mathis), the county clerk, circuit clerk, prosecuting attorney, sheriff, assessor, three magistrates, three family court judges, two board of education seats (now held by Robbie Bailey, District 2/Pineville areas, and Mike Prichard, District 1/Mullens areas), a surveyor and a Soil Conservation District supervisor.
Non-partisan offices will be elected during the primary and take office July 1. Those include the circuit judge, magistrates, family court judges and two board of education seats.
While the board of education seats have been non-partisan, this election marks the first time judges and magistrate candidates are categorized as non-partisan.
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Among those filing as of Wednesday afternoon:
David “Bugs” Stover filed to keep the circuit clerk’s office.
C.S. “Sherrill” Parker filed for sheriff. Parker now serves as the chief deputy, but has previously worn the sheriff’s badge. Sheriff Randall Aliff is retiring and will not seek re-election.
Michael E. “Mike” Cook also filed to retain the assessor’s office.
Michael Cochrane filed to keep the prosecuting attorney seat.
For county commission, incumbent Larry Mathis is challenged by Edward “Ed” Harless and Sam “Doc” Muscari Sr. filed. Both Harless and Muscari have previously served as commissioners.
For county clerk, current District 1 commissioner Jason Mullins filed in addition to long-time deputy clerk Jewell Spears Aguilar. Current county Clerk D. Michael “Mike” Goode is running for the District 9 senate seat.
For Soil Conservation District supervisor, Edsel Ray Lafferty filed.
Sefton Ray Stewart filed for county surveyor.
Stover and Stewart are Republicans; the remaining candidates are Democrats.
For the non-partisan magistrate seats, incumbent J.R. Boles filed for District 1/Mullens areas as did Jeffery Lane Dunigon; incumbent Craig Cook filed in District 2/Pineville areas; incumbent I. Kay Fulford and current Mullens Police Chief Ray Toler as well as current Oceana Police Chief Jeff Barlow all filed for the District 3/Oceana areas. One magistrate will be elected from each district.
Prichard filed to keep his board of education seat. Betty Jenkins England also filed.
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The circuit judge and family court judges are elected to eight-year terms.
The county commissioner, county clerk and circuit clerk will be elected to six-year terms, while the prosecutor, sheriff, assessor, magistrates and board of education members have four-year terms.
Candidates in county races file in the county courthouse in Pineville and, for state races, candidates file in the secretary of state’s office in Charleston.
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The primary election, in which voters elect their party’s nominee in the partisan races, is set for May 10.
The general election, during which the party nominees will square off against each other, is scheduled Nov. 8.
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In the upcoming election, county voters will help elect the House of Delegates members in the 21st, 24th, 25th and 31st districts as well as a District 9 senator.
Additionally on the state ticket, voters will elect the governor, secretary of state, auditor, treasurer, agriculture commissioner, and attorney general.
At the federal level, a new president and vice president will be elected as well as U.S. House of Representatives members, who are elected to two-year terms, in three West Virginia districts.
Candidates for these state and federal offices file in the West Virginia secretary of state’s office.