Races for county offices in Barry and Lawrence counties have attracted a large number of candidates who filed Tuesday for the Aug. 7 primary election.
Nearly a dozen candidates filed to run for Barry County office. Ten candidates have signed on to run as Republicans with only one Democratic candidate filing so far.
Incumbents Sherry Sears, county assessor, and Jim Fohn, county coroner, both Republicans, have filed for new four-year terms.
Wayne Hendrix, southern county commissioner, also filed for re-election. Hendrix is the only Democrat who has announced his candidacy.
Long-time Sheriff Mick Epperly will face competition from challenger David Bowman, of Exeter, in the upcoming primary election.
The northern county commissioner and public administrator positions have also attracted multiple candidates.
Eddie Dummit, of Verona, Gary Schad, of Purdy, and David Redshaw, of Purdy, have all filed as Republicans seeking the northern commissioner's seat.
Stormy Holtzman, of Cassville, and Pam Modlin, of Wheaton, have announced their intentions to run for public administrator.
Candidates for offices in Lawrence County turned out in strength on Tuesday.
The highest number of candidates filed for western commissioner, where four-term incumbent Rodney Barnes chose not to see another term. Running for the position are: Derf Eukel, of Mt. Vernon; Rick Johnson, of Mt. Vernon; David Botts, of Mt. Vernon; and Johnny Spencer, of Stotts City. All are running as Republicans. None have run for the post before.
All of the incumbents for the remaining county offices filed for re-election. Sheriff Brad DeLay, of Mt. Vernon, has filed for a second four-year term. Joe Ruscha, of rural Verona, filed for a second term as eastern commissioner. Pam Fobair, of Mt. Vernon, filed for a third term as public administrator. Doug Bowerman, of Mt. Vernon, filed for a third term as county assessor. Scott Lakin, of Pierce City, filed for a second term as coroner. All are running as Republicans.
39th Circuit judge
Only one candidate filed for the 39th Judicial Circuit circuit judge seat. Current State Senator Jack Goodman, of Mt. Vernon, filed to run as a Republican.
Several candidates have filed for state representative and state senator to represent the bi-county area.
For the 29th District state senator seat, four candidates filed. Running are David Sater, of Cassville; James Strahan, of Kirbyville; Gayle Wridge, of Branson; and James Strafuss, of Branson. All are running as Republicans. Jack Goodman, who has held the seat, is ineligible to run due to term limits.
For the 158th District state representative seat, which includes Barry County, three candidates filed. They are Mike Bennett, of Purdy; Scott Fitzpatrick, of Shell Knob; and Frank Washburn, of Monett. The 158th District includes which includes Barry County and the southwest corner of Lawrence County, including half of Pierce City,
For 159th District state representative seat, three-term Republican incumbent Don Ruzicka, from Mt. Vernon, is the only candidate to file on the first day.
The deadline to file for Aug. 7 primary election is March 27. The general election will be held on Nov. 6.