By: Greg Bird
The field for the 2014 General Election has expanded by two with the announcements of write-in candidates Wayne Phillips and Jerry Privett this past week.
Phillips will run as a write-in for the Judge Executive position, while Privett is running for Jailer.
Phillips, who announced his candidacy Monday afternoon, said he had been contemplating the decision for a while.
Phillips, who had originally signed up for the Primary election this spring, was forced to withdraw a few weeks after filing citing family issues.
“I want to announce my candidacy for McCreary County Judge Executive,” Phillips said in a statement. “Family health issues beyond my control influenced my original plan, but these health concerns have improved.”
“As a result of this decision, I will have a write-in campaign. Therefore I am asking you to please consider my name when you cast your vote on this important decision in November.”
With the announcement, Phillips stated he was still formulating a campaign platform and will announce more details of his campaign in coming weeks.
Phillips, a retired educator, is the twin brother of former Judge Executive Blaine Phillips, who served two terms from 2002-2010.
Phillips will be challenging Incumbent Doug Stephens and Democrat nominee Jimmy Waters.
Privett, another Primary candidate who withdrew from the ballot before the election, announced his decision to run as a write-in last Thursday.
He stated health issues prompted the withdrawal, but now is ready to hit the campaign trail.
Privett, a former employee of the McCreary County Detention Center, who took on a similar position in Whitley County after the Jail closed, said his experience in the corrections field will be an asset to his campaign.
“I have eight years of corrections experience between McCreary County and Whitley County,” he said. “I have been affiliated with law enforcement for 15 years. I am Department of Corrections trained and a certified instructor.”
He stated he was optimistic about the future of a jail in McCreary County, but knows it will be a long process before it can happen.
“I have spoken with the Department of Corrections, and I think there is a possibility of eventually re-opening the jail. It is going to take some time, but I would like to see it reopen. We should look at opening it as a Life Safety Jail first, and building back from there.”
Privett will be running against Jessie Hatfield (R) and Derek Jones (D) for the seat in November.
Write in candidates have until October 24 to register with the County Clerk’s Office. Any write in candidate will not have their name appear on the ballot, but voters will have an opportunity to write in their vote on election day.
The General Election will be held on November 4.