Most municipal elections in Jefferson uncontested

CHARLES TOWN — While the candidate filing period for this year’s municipal elections in most of Jefferson County’s towns has come to an end, many municipal races are already effectively decided because of a low number of candidates, though there is still time for write-in candidates to apply in many races.

Ranson will hold mayoral and town council elections in June. Incumbent Mayor David Hamill is running unopposed, as is incumbent at-large council member Duke Pierson. Third ward council member Debbie McClure has not filed for re-election.

Mike Anderson, currently vice president of the town’s planning commission, is the only candidate who has filed to run for the Third ward seat. He says he is dissatisfied with the town’s responsiveness to citizens’ concerns. Anderson, who owns Quality Masters Carpet Care and Pizza City, said he is also concerned about local utility prices.

In Harpers Ferry, Mayor Joe Anderson will not run in the 2013 elections. Current town council member Greg Vaughn will likely run unopposed for the position of mayor unless a write-in candidate files to challenge him. Incumbent recorder Kevin Carden is running unopposed.

All five of Harpers Ferry’s town council seats are up for election. Incumbents Betsy Bainbridge, Jerry Hutton, Dan Riss and Charlotte Thompson have all filed for re-election. Helen “Hap” Becker is the only candidate who has filed to replace Vaughn as the fifth council member.

“I have a lot of confidence in the direction the Harpers Ferry Town Council and the many volunteers are taking, and I feel like I want to do my part,” said Becker, 67, who is a retired public school teacher. “I’d like to see the completion of the visioning process that was begun last winter and the update of the comprehensive plan.”

She said she has the ability to help groups in disagreement find common ground for compromise, which she says will be useful in the position.

In Charles Town, incumbent Mayor Peggy Smith is running unopposed for re-election, as are Sandra McDonald and Chet Hines, council members representing the First and Second wards respectively.

In the Third ward, incumbent council member Donald Clendening is being challenged by Jonathan Wertman. Geary Johns will challenge incumbent council member Richard Bringewatt.

In Bolivar, incumbent Mayor Robert Hardy and recorder Jean Reed will run unopposed for re-election.

All five of the Bolivar Town Council’s seats are up for re-election, and six candidates – including the four incumbents, John Paul Heafer, David Kardok, Paul David Staubs and Helen A. Dettmer – have filed for those seats. The new candidates are Donna Howe Callar and Vicki Eckert.

Shepherdstown is not scheduled to hold elections in 2013.

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