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Several Lafayette County Races Still With One Candidate

By Alyssa Schnugg

News editor


At the end of the second week of the 2023 local election qualification period, some races are starting to heat up with several candidates vying for the same seat, while several races are still with only one candidate.

The qualification period began on Jan. 3 and ends at 5 p.m. on Feb. 1.

The races for Circuit Court clerk, County Attorney, Sheriff, all three Constable seats, two of three Justice Court Judge seats and Chancery Clerk all have just one opponent thus far.

The most contested races as of 5 p.m. on Friday are in District 5 and District 3 Supervisor races. The current District 5 supervisor, Mike Roberts, is not running to retain his seat. He, instead, has qualified to run for Chancery Clerk, leaving the District 5 race open with no incumbent.

There are currently four people running for District 5 supervisor.

In District 3, incumbent Supervisor David Rikard has three challengers. The other Districts, 1, 2 and 4, each have two people running – the incumbent and one challenger.

Qualifying as of Friday, Jan. 13, for county elections:

  • Circuit Court Clerk: Incumbent Court Clerk Jeff Busy
  • County Attorney: Incumbent Attorney Jay Chain
  • Sheriff: Incumbent Sheriff Joey East
  • Justice Court Judge-Northern District: LaSonja “Sue” Pettis (no incumbent)
  • Justice Court Judge-Central District: Incumbent Judge Mickey Avent
  • Justice Court Judge-Southern: Incumbent Judge Johnny Wayne McLarty and Benjamin Justus
  • Board of Supervisors:
  1. District 1 – Incumbent Supervisor Brent Larson and Anthony Cox
  2. District 2- Incumbent Supervisor Larry Gillespie and Avery Dunn
  3. District 3 – Incumbent Supervisor David Rikard, Dale Timothy Gordon, Larandust Coleman and Josh Thweatt
  4. District 4 – Incumbent Supervisor Chad McLarty and Scott Allen
  5. District 5 – Mike Fortner, Greg Bynum, Don Mason and Jason Kent (no incumbent)
  • Constable-North: Incumbent Constable Greg Pettis
  • Constable-Central: Incumbent Constable Kenneth Drewery
  • Constable-South: Incumbent Constable Jack Theobald
  • Chancery Clerk: Mike Roberts
  • Tax Assessor/Collector: Rocky Kennedy and Shelia Busby Kelly (no incumbent)
  • Coroner: Glen Coleman
  • Election Commission: District 2 – Erin Smith
  • Coroner: Glenn Coleman and Marilyn P. Delbridge

State Elections

  • Governor: Incumbent Republican Tate Reeves, Democrats Brandon Presley and Gregory Wash
  • Lt. Governor: Incumbent Delbert Hosemann and Shane Quick, both Republican
  • Senate 9: Incumbent Nicole Boyd
  • House of Representatives District 12: Clay Deweese

If someone is running as a political party candidate – Republican or Democrat – they need to pay a fee ($50 to $250, depending on the office). Independent candidates must have 50 signatures from qualified electors of the district for county-wide seats.

District seats only require 15 signatures.

The primary will be on Aug. 8 with the primary runoff on Aug. 29. The General Election will be on Nov. 7 with the general election runoff on Nov. 28.

Hotty Toddy News will provide a weekly update on Mondays on who qualifies to run for a local office during the qualification period.

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