With the filing deadline past, ballots for the May 8 primary election are set, with races existing for nearly every position.
On the county ballot, four men seek the sheriff's job,being vacated by James B. Hoskins who is currently completing the maximum two terms. Democrats Jeff Montgomery, Mark Edric Eller, "Rob" Robert Haught, and John Edward Brookover in the race for sheriff.
Three Democrats are also in the race for county commissioner. Incumbent Robert "Bob" Gorby is being challenged by Amy Jo Dieffenbauch and Cecilia Jane Ries.
The retirement of long-time Assessor Ralph Phillips has opened that race with three placing their names on the ballot: Scott Lemley, James B. Hoskins, and Nita J. King.
Three seems to be the magic number as another trio seeks two seats on the Wetzel County Board of Education: Carolyn Lemasters Gatian, District 2; James J. "Cork" Bowen, District 2; and Linda Kirk, District 1. Rules dictate that the board can have a maximum of two members from any one district. Given the members not up for re-election-Mike Blair, District 1; Willie Baker, District 3; and Bob Patterson, District 3-the two new members can either be both from District 2 or one each from Districts 1 and 2.
The others who have filed on the county ballot are all incumbents: Prosecuting Attorney, Timothy E. Haught; Magistrate (elect two), Judith Phillips Goontz and Thomas J. Shepherd; and Surveyor, Henry M. Parsons.
There is competition in every race on the New Martinsville municipal ballot; all positions are for four-year terms.
Keith Nelsen, 645 Fifth St., and Steven A. Bohrer, 750 N. Main Street, are facing off in a quest for the mayor's office.
Matt Bland, 217 Maple Ave., will face Linda K. Barth, 224 Clark Street, for the First Ward council seat currently held by Holly Grandstaff, not seeking reelection.
Incumbent Joel Potts, 408 Laurel Terrace, is being opposed by former councilwoman Doris A. Fannin, 68 East Thistle Dr., for the Fifth Ward council position.
Dennis Lively, 174 Paddock Green Drive; Anthony Castranova, 827 Johnson Street; and Iris "Deaner" Isaacs, 1279 North State Route 2; are all seeking the Sixth Ward council slot currently filled by Casey Corliss, not seeking reelection.
According to the West Virginia Secretary of State's Web site, www.wvsos.com, state and national races of local interest have developed as follows.
Incumbent Republican David B. McKinley of Wheeling will be unopposed in the primary for the U.S. House of Representatives for District 1. But Sue Thorn of Wheeling is running unopposed for the same position on the Democrat ticket.
Incumbent Jeffrey V. Kessler, Democrat, of Glen Dale, Marshall County, is unopposed for State Senate, District 2.
For the House of Delegates, Incumbent Dave Pethtel, Democrat, of Hundred, wants to represent District 5 again. Raymond V. Davis III of New Martinsville is also on the ballot for that position for the Mountain Party. House of Delegates District 6 includes three candidates-Incumbent Wm. Roger Romine, Republican, of Sistersville, will face the winner of the Democrat nomination in the general election. Democrats on the ballot are Charlie Delauder of Middlebourne and Karl Paul of Wick.
Democrats Incumbent Joe Manchin III, Marion County, will be challenged by Sheirl Fletcher of Monongalia County, Morgantown, to represent this area in the U.S. Senate. On the Republican side of that race, John R. Raese of Monongalia County, Morgantown, is unopposed.
While it is a statewide office, the race for the two seats as Justice of the Supreme Court of Appeals deserves mention locally as H. John "Buck" Rogers, Democrat, of New Martinsville is seeking election to that position. Other candidates are J.D. Beane, Democrat, Wood County, Parkersburg; Letitia "Tish" Chafin, Democrat, Kanawha County, Charleston; Incumbent Robin Jean Davis, Democrat, Kanawha County, Charleston; Louis Palmer, Democrat, Kanawha County, Pocatalico; James J. "Jim" Rowe, Democrat, Greenbrier County, Lewisburg; Allen Loughry, Republican, Kanawha County, Charleston; and John Yoder, Republican, Jefferson County, Harpers Ferry. The other incumbent, Justice Thomas E. McHugh did not file for reelection.