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Deadline nears to run for vacant Sullivan County Commission seat

August 11th, 2012 9:50 pm by J. H. Osborne

KINGSPORT — Would-be candidates for an open District 11 seat on the Sullivan County Commission have a few days left to meet a deadline to get on the Nov. 6 ballot.

As of Friday afternoon, no one had picked up a petition to seek a spot on the ballot as an independent.

The deadline to file completed petitions is noon Aug. 16.

District 11 voters will elect someone on Nov. 6 to fill out the unexpired two years of a four-year term in the seat, which was vacated when Joe Herron resigned last month.

The Republican Party of Sullivan County has nominated former Kingsport Alderman Pat Shull to represent the GOP on the November ballot.

Sullivan County Democrats also have caucused, and indicated to local election officials that the party’s nominee will be Carl E. Hale.

The Sullivan County Commission has the option of appointing someone to fill the seat until the November election. The Republican-dominated commission voted last month to take that action this month, on Aug. 20.

To be considered for the temporary appointment, viewed by political observers as a leg-up for anyone hoping to win election to the seat in November, someone must be a resident of District 11 and meet other rules of eligibility.

Shull has been lobbying commissioners to name him to the seat at that point.

To get on the ballot for the seat in November, would-be candidates had two choices: become the official nominee of a political party (parties have the option of holding a caucus to select a nominee to be on the ballot); or file a petition with the Sullivan County Election Commission to run as an independent.

The withdrawal deadline is noon Aug. 23, Booher said.

The last day to register to vote, if you aren’t already, and be eligible to cast a ballot in the Nov. 6 election is Oct. 9.

The open seat is one of three representing the commission’s District 11.

It became vacant when Joe Herron resigned July 16 after 10 years of service.

Herron was midway through his third four-year term, which would have expired Sept. 1, 2014.

The timing of his resignation means voters in District 11 will be able to choose someone in November to serve the remainder of that term.

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