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Many Pa. candidates unopposed today

November 01, 1999|By DON AINES

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - More than 120 county, borough, township and school board offices are listed on the ballots in today's election in Franklin County, but voters won't have that many choices to make as many candidates are unopposed and some offices have no candidates.

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There are four candidates for three seats on the Board of County Commissioners, according to County Election Board records. Incumbent Republicans G. Warren Elliott, Bob Thomas and Democrat Cheryl S. Plummer are running for re-election with Bruce W. Hockersmith, a Democrat, seeking to unseat one of them.

There is a race for County Coroner between Republican Jeffrey R. Conner, the current chief deputy coroner, and Democrat Ronald R. Coover.

Six other incumbents for countywide offices have no opposition.

Republican Carol Van Horn, a Chambersburg attorney, is the only candidate running to fill a vacancy on the 39th District of the Court of Common Pleas created by the Sept. 30 resignation for health reasons of Judge William H. Kaye. The district covers both Franklin and Fulton counties.

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Twenty-nine offices, most for municipal assessors and auditors, have no candidates on the ballot and will be filled either by write-ins or appointments. Also open with no candidates are a two-year seat on the Greencastle Borough Council; a four-year seat on the Mercersburg Borough Council; two two-year seats and three four-year seats on the Orrstown Borough Council; and a six-year seat on the Warren Township Board of Supervisors.

More than 30 other district justice, borough and township offices have just one candidate on the ballot, many of them incumbents, according to the Election Board.

In three of the five Chambersburg Borough Council races, there are two candidates. First Ward incumbent William F. McLaughlin faces a challenge from Democrat Gary L. Hawbaker; and Democrat Sharon Bigler is running against incumbent Republican James C. Goetz in the Fourth Ward.

Third Ward voters will select either Republican Scott Thomas or Democrat Kris Burget to replace Councilman W. Larry Johnson, who did not run for a third term.

In Montgomery Township, incumbent GOP Supervisor Dean E. Metcalfe Sr. is running against Libertarian Party nominee Jeremiah Hornbaker for a six-year seat. There are 185 registered Libertarians in the county, according to the Voter Registration Office.

Green Party candidate Tom Linzey is running for a six-year seat on the Southampton Township Board of Supervisors against Paul E. Witter, who won both the Republican and Democratic nominations. The Voter Registration Office said there are eight Green Party members in the county.

Republican Emory S. McMullen and Democrat William T. O'Donnell are running for a six-year seat on the Fannett Township Board of Supervisors. Democrat Ray A. Swartz and Republican Bob Boyd are running for a six-year seat on the Lurgan Township Board of Supervisors.

In Metal Township, Republican William E. Swailes and Democrat Mark F. Crider are running for a two year-seat on the Board of Supervisors.

In the Greencastle-Antrim School District, there are six candidates for five open seats on the School Board: Ronald Troskoski, Howard B. Ritchey, David E. Delauter, Hal E. Myers, Jill A. Patterson and Karin C. Johnson.

Michael J. Rice, Gale Sam Bricker, Guy N. Hollenshead, Larry M. Buchanan, David G. Fox, Joseph A. Tice and Ralph E. Sipes are the seven candidates for five open seats on the Tuscarora Area School District Board of Directors.

David A. Drawbaugh remains on the ballot for the Chambersburg Area School District Region 5 seat against Republican incumbent Penny W. Stoner, although he withdrew from the race last week, according to the Election Board.

Election Board Chairman Steve Minnich declined to predict voter turnout for the election.

"I just don't get into the business of forecasting turnout," he said. "I don't think it's healthy, and I don't think anybody knows, anyhow," he said.

Turnout for the 1995 election, during which the same countywide offices were open, was 44 percent.

The numbers favor the GOP candidates with 39,888 registered Republicans, 22,043 Democrats and 7,158 people registered as being independent or with other political parties.

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