No Democrats file for countywide office

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 17, 2022

Five running in GOP primary for commission

As far as countywide offices are concerned, it looks like the general election in Lawrence County may be a non-event this year.

No Democratic candidates filed for either the county commission or the auditor races, meaning, barring the entry of any write-in or independent candidates, the winner of the Republican primary is guaranteed to take the office.

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In the county auditor race, incumbent Republican Paul David Knipp filed for re-election and is running unopposed in the primary.

The primary for county commissioner will be a crowded one, with incumbent Republican Freddie Hayes Jr. seeking re-election. He is being challenged by Lester Brumfield, Fayette Township trustee Mike Finley, Rome Township trustee Brian Pinkerman and former Lawrence County Sheriff Tim Sexton.

Hayes was appointed as commissioner in 2012, following the death of Paul Herrell. He was elected to a full term in 2014 and re-elected in 2018.

Candidates for the primary ballot were certified on Feb. 10 in a meeting at the board of elections.

Write-in candidates can still file for both parties’ primary elections until Feb. 24. Independent candidates for the general can file until August.

State Reps. Brian Baldridge and Jason Stephens, both Republicans who represent part of Lawrence County, have filed for re-election, though, due to redistricting maps yet to be finalized in Ohio, it is unclear who their opponents will be or what counties will be voting in those races.

Also on the ballot is a half percent sales tax for Lawrence County for purposes of constructing and operating a new county jail, as well as a half mill recreation levy renewal for Ironton voters.