Race for council getting crowded

GREENFIELD — The race for the Republican nomination for three at-large county council seats will be contested this May.

Six Republicans, including two incumbents, have filed to run for the GOP nomination. Voters’ top three choices in the May primary will advance to the general election in November.

Additionally, two Democrats have entered the race, which means the general election will be contested.

Greenfield resident George Langston, a member of Hancock County’s tea party; Republican Steve Craney of Greenfield; and incumbent Kent Fisk, a Republican, recently filed paperwork to appear on the GOP ballot.

Other Republican candidates who already had filed to run in the race include:

Incumbent Debbie Bledsoe of New Palestine

Mark Lozier of Greenfield

Bob McDaniel of Charlottesville

Democrats Rita Johnson of Greenfield, who is married to local Democrat party chair Randy Johnson, and Randy Jones of Greenfield have filed to run for the Democratic party nomination.

Currently, the three at-large council council seats are held by Bledsoe, Fisk and Randy Sorrell, who has filed to run in the District 1 commissioners race and is therefore not seeking re-election to the council.

Langston, who is retired from the U.S. Air Force and has lived in Hancock County most of his life, attends many county council and commissioners meetings, as he’s active with the local tea party.

He’s seeking election because he wants to see the county be smarter with its spending. He believes Hancock County residents are overtaxed, and the council has been irresponsible with county funds, choosing to borrow money instead of using cash reserves to pay for large projects, Langston said.

Rita Johnson, who moved to the county a few years ago, said she’s running as a way to rev up the local Democratic Party, which has been largely absent from local ballots in recent years. She previously worked as a deputy clerk in Huntington County handling small claims, traffic violations and criminal cases and accounting.

Randy Jones, who works in construction, said he’s running for office because he wants to inspire change in Hancock County by attracting more businesses to Greenfield. He also hopes to see more money earmarked for local road repair.

In recent history, Republicans have represented the majority of local officeholders and Jones wants to see a two-party system working in the county, he said.

The deadline to file for local office is noon Feb. 5. The primary is May 3.

Coming soon

Stay tuned. The Daily Reporter will feature profiles on all candidates running for local office in coming weeks.

Deadline approaching

The deadline to file to run for local office is noon Feb. 5. To file for election, visit the election office in the Hancock County Courthouse, 9 E. Main St., Greenfield.

At a glance

Local offices on May’s primary ballot include:

  • County treasurer
  • County coroner
  • District 1 commissioner
  • District 3 commissioner
  • County council at-large (3 seats)
  • Precinct committeemen
  • State convention delegate
Samm Quinn is a reporter at the Greenfield Daily Reporter. She can be reached at 317-477-3275 or squinn@greenfieldreporter.com.