Flurry of filings mark candidate signup deadline

By Vicki Hyatt | Feb 28, 2014
Photo by: Vicki Hyatt Maggie Valley business owner Kyle Edwards, front, and Philip Wight, a Maggie Valley alderman, both filed for county commissioner seats. Edwards, a Democrat, will face four others in a primary race in which three will move forward. Wight and fellow Republican, Denny King, won't need a primary race to get on the November ballot.

Before Friday’s deadline, there was a flurry of filings for public office, including four more candidates the Haywood County Board of Commissioners.

Denny King, an engineer from Canton and Maggie Valley Alderman Philip Wight filed on the Republican ticket, while Robert “Bob” McClure and Kyle Edwards filed on the Democratic ticket.

Incumbent Democrats Mike Sorrells, Bill Upton and Kirk Kirkpatrick — have filed for re-election, and Windy McKinney has filed for a commissioner seat on the Libertarian ticket. There are three positions open, so the May primary will determine which of the five Democrats will advance to the General Election.

With three seats available, the Republican and Libertarian candidates will not need a primary race.

Mike Matthews, a former Maggie Valley alderman, has filed for the position of tax collector on the Republican ticket. He will face incumbent Democrat David Francis in the November election.

There is just one other contested primary race locally in May, and that is for the 50th state senate seat currently held by Republican Jim Davis of Franklin. Both Jane Hipps of Waynesville and Ron Robinson of Sylva have filed on the Democratic ticket, and the winner of the May primary will face Franklin in November.

In North Carolina, candidates must file for office by noon Feb. 28 to appear on the election ballot.

Edwards, a Maggie Valley business owner, said he would like to see more jobs in Haywood County and fewer regulations that stand in the way of jobs, especially in the construction industry.

“We need to give companies a reason to come here to Haywood County,” he said. “Give them tax breaks, whatever we can do to make them come.”

Edwards previously ran for commissioner in 2008.

McClure, a Haywood County native, Army veteran and former Dayco employee, has worked at the Haywood County Sheriff’s Office for the past 13 years.  He said, if elected, he try to help the county employees and would be a spokesperson for the people — somebody who the people could talk to and who would listen to them. He also said the commissioners

“This could be a thriving county,” he said. “It’s time for a change.”

King said he will work to bring fairness and respect back to all of the people regardless of an individual’s party affiliation.

"The people should never have to fear retribution by those elected or appointed to serve for exercising their First Amendment rights or for their political beliefs," he said.

Matthews and Wight did not respond to interview requests by press deadline.

Local elected officials Sheri Rogers, register of deeds;  June Ray, clerk of court; Greg Christopher, sheriff; and district judges Kristina Earwood, Donna Forga and Roy Wijewrickrama face no opposition in their quest for re-election.

State Rep. Joe Sam Queen, a Democrat, will go up against Republican Mike Clampitt in November and Rep. Michele Presnell, a Republican, will face challenger Dean Hicks. Both are from Burnsville.

In the race for district attorney for the 30th Judicial District, Republican Ashley Welch and Democrat Jim Moore will face off in the November election.

None of these candidates will be on the May ballot.