In the wide-open race for Wetzel County Assessor, current County Commissioner Scott Lemley gained the Democratic nod in Tuesday's primary.
He garnered 1,208 votes with current Sheriff James Hoskins nipping at his heels with only 58 fewer ballots (1,150) cast in his favor. Deputy Assessor Nita King came in third with a respectable 904 votes. Current Assessor Ralph Phillips is retiring at the end of this term.
Another hot race, for Wetzel County?Sheriff, was won by recently retired deputy John Brookover. He gathered 1,563 votes with the nearest competitor being Chief Deputy Rob Haught with 1,187 votes. Mark Eller received 367 votes while Jeff Montgomery got 132.
Incumbent Commissioner Bob Gorby will serve another term as he won that election handily with 1,656 votes. Allen Rush and Amy Jo Dieffenbauch were nearly tied for third with 703 and 701 votes, respectively. Cecilia Jane Ries garnered 129 votes.
The two open seats on the Wetzel County?Board of Education will be filled by Linda Kirk, 2,669 votes, and Carolyn Lemasters Gatian, 1,454. The third candidate, Jim "Cork" Bowen, was close behind with 1,420 votes.
New Martinsville's municipal election is also on the primary ballot. Keith Nelsen will be the city's next mayor, taking over for Lucille Blum who did not seek another term. Nelsen received 811 votes while competitor Steven Bohrer won 732.
For council seats, Linda Barth will represent the First Ward. She won with 76 votes over competitor Matt Bland, 41 votes. The Fifth Ward will be served once again by former councilperson Doris Fannin who took 149 votes, beating out incumbent Joel Potts who had 131 votes. The three-way race in the Sixth Ward was won by Iris "Deaner" Isaacs with 183 votes compared to Anthony "Cass" Castranova's 112 and Dennis Lively's 80.
Vote totals in uncontested county races were as follows: Prosecutor Timothy Haught, 2,692; Magistrate Judith Phillips Goontz, 2,365; Magistrate Thomas Shepherd, 2,513; and Surveyor Henry Parsons, 2,663.
In Wetzel County, Democratic incumbents Del. Dave Pethtel received 2,733 votes and Sen. Jeffrey Kessler got 2,672 votes.
A total of 4,178 votes were cast in Wetzel County's Primary Election. With 12,647 registered voters, that relates to a 33 percent voter turnout.