Ten File For Fulton Co. Commissioner Seats
With only two months remaining until the spring municipal primary, 10 candidates for Fulton County commissioner are hitting the campaign trail hot and heavy as registered voters will greatly narrow the field on May 17 to only two Republicans and two Democrats.
Some expected and unexpected names currently appear on the “unofficial” list of candidates meeting the March 8 filing deadline for petitions. The Fulton County Board of Elections was slated to meet Wednesday to check and validate all petitions filed, which include those from two new commissioner candidates who did not previously announce their intention to seek office.
McConnellsburg Borough Mayor and former McConnellsburg Fire Co. President Michael Chilcote Sr. along with area builder Joseph M. Hagerty of Warfordsburg joined the list of “unofficial” Republican candidates for commissioner last Tuesday. Fellow Republican candidates meeting the filing deadline include Commissioner Craig Cutchall; local businessman and former missionary Rodney Mc- Cray; McConnellsburg Borough Council member Richard Buterbaugh II; former county auditor and farmer Ricky A. Leese; and former county 911 coordinator Lisa Mellott-McConahy.
On the Democratic ticket, voters will also nominate two candidates for commissioner to move forward to the November election. Democratic candidates having filed petitions are incumbent Commissioner David R. Hoover II, McConnellsburg Borough Council President Travis O. Bard and former commissioner candidate and area farmer Irvin Dasher.
Incumbent Rebecca D. Kendall (R) of McConnellsburg has filed a petition to seek reelection to her position of county auditor, while fellow incumbents Phyllis Bard (D) and Kimberley Seiders (R) have opted not to seek re-election as county auditors. With two incumbents out of the picture, Democrats Robert R. Messick of McConnellsburg and Ellen R. Wager, Harrisonville, and Republican Sandra “Sonnie” Stenger, also of McConnellsburg, have all filed petitions in hopes of securing the three open auditor positions.
Magisterial District Judge Devin C. Horne of Hustontown has crossfiled on both the Democratic and Republican tickets to retain his position in northern Fulton County. At the opposite end of Fulton County, the impending retirement of Magisterial District Judge Carol Jean Johnson has brought three potential candidates to light. Fulton County Public Defender Tamela Mellott Bard, Belfast Township Supervisor Richard Harr and Needmore resident Adrianne Leese-Gregory have crossfiled on both tickets for the vacant judicial position.
County Sheriff Keith B. Stains is seeking re-election on the Republican ticket, while Democratic contender Peggy Sue Bailey has also filed a petition for the spring election. Other county officials who appear to be uncontested at this time include District Attorney Travis Kendall (R), Treasurer Monica K. Seville (R) and Coroner Berley L. Souders (R)
School board races will also be a highlight during the 2011 elections with incumbents and newcomers alike to be found on the May 17 ballot in the Central Fulton School District. Retired Fulton County chief probation officer Roger W. Strait crossfiled in hopes of joining the board of education, while incumbents Linda H. Garber, Cory L. Gress, Christopher R. Hann, Rick E. Marshall and Gary L. Shives are seeking re- election on both tickets.
At the Forbes Road School District, newcomers filing petitions for five seats include former district superintendent Dr. Merrill Arnold; former board member Rheon Gelvin; retired, longtime elementary principal Byron Helsel; and parent and Harrisonville resident Rodney C. Varney. All four candidates have crossfiled as have incumbents Teressa Bard and Karen A. Peffer. Fellow incumbent Deborah R. Strait has filed a petition as a Republican candidate.
Meanwhile, Dale Sigel and Sam Souders have crossfiled as candidates for the Southern Fulton School Board where voters will find fellow newcomer and local transportation contractor David R. Smith II and incumbent Timothy A. Mellott as Republican candidates for office. Incumbents Dwight Bard and Danny Crouse have both crossfiled.
Candidates having filed for borough/township positions are as follows:
Marlin Harr (R), Ayr supervisor
Rebecca D. Kendall (R), Ayr auditor
John M. Keefer Jr. (R), Belfast supervisor
W. Matthew Shives (D), Belfast supervisor
Scott Smartt (R) Belfast supervisor
Larry G. Mellott (R), Belfast auditor
Charles A. Poole (D), Bethel supervisor
Ruthann Golden (R), Bethel auditor
Robert T. Layton (D), Brush Creek supervisor
Jean Remsburg (R), Brush Creek supervisor
Diane E. Whiteside (D), Brush Creek auditor
George W. Black (R), Dublin supervisor
Iva L. Swindell (D), Licking Creek supervisor
Edwin E. Swope (R), Licking Creek supervisor
Robert R. Messick (D) Licking Creek auditor
Travis O. Bard (D), Mc- Connellsburg Borough Council
Richard L. Buterbaugh II (R), McConnellsburg Borough Council
David A. Washabaugh IV (R), McConnellsburg Borough Council
Peggy Gordon-Headley (R), McConnellsburg Borough auditor
Boyd W. Gelvin Sr. (D), Taylor supervisor
Doris L. Knepper (R), Taylor auditor
Martha Berkstresser (D), Taylor auditor
D. Gene Mellott (D), Thompson supervisor
Dorothy J. Hixon (R), Thompson auditor
Mack M. Clevenger (R), Todd supervisor
Kim R. Christian (D), Todd auditor
Adriel F. Fletcher (R), Union supervisor
Paul Schriever (R), Union supervisor
Robert Shipley (R), Union supervisor
Kaylie Oakman (R), Union tax collector
Tina R. Ford (R), Wells supervisor
Janis Helsel (R), Wells tax collector.
Residents interested in viewing the petition filers’ information online can visit the county’s election page at http://www.co.fulton.pa.us/elections. php.