Special vote for sheriff not needed

Published 5:00 am Thursday, September 14, 2006

New Sheriff Steve Rushing will serve the remainder of thecurrent term through next year and a special election is notneeded, officials said.

“We don’t have to have a special election,” Circuit Clerk TerryLynn Watkins said after speaking Wednesday with officials in theattorney general’s office.

Rushing was appointed sheriff Tuesday after Wiley Calcoteresigned and pleaded guilty to one count of embezzlement.

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Citing her conversation with the AG’s office, Watkins saidRushing’s appointment falls within time constraints that wouldallow him to finish the term through Dec. 31, 2007.

One reason is the appointment happened less than 90 days beforethe next regularly scheduled general election and there is notenough time to allow potential candidates to qualify. Voters nextgo to the polls Nov. 7 to cast ballots in federal and area judicialelections.

Regular elections for state and county offices will be held nextyear. With those being so close, Watkins was appreciative thecounty would not have to spend any additional money for a specialelection.

Rushing has not indicated whether he will run for a full term.He indicated Tuesday he is concentrating on getting familiar withthe new job and increasing public confidence in the department.