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Absentee count makes primary election official

March 15, 2001

Absentee count makes primary election official



By DAN KULIN

dank@herald-mail.com

Absentee ballots counted Thursday solidified the leads of the top five vote-getters in Hagerstown's Republican and Democratic primaries.

Democratic council candidate N. Linn Hendershot and Republican council candidate Michael E. Nehring secured spots on the May general election ballots with fifth place finishes in their party's primaries. The absentee ballots could have knocked both candidates to sixth place in their primary races and off of the general election ballot.

The city's May 15 general election ballot is expected to list:

- Mayoral candidates: Democrat William M. Breichner, a current council member, and incumbent Mayor Robert E. Bruchey II, a Republican.

- Council candidates: Democrats Penny May Nigh, Lewis C. Metzner, Kristin B. Aleshire, Steven T. Sager and N. Linn Hendershot; and Republicans Carol N. Moller, Victoria K. Bodnar, Alfred W. Boyer, Richard G. Everhart and Michael E. Nehring.

Hagerstown's mayor is paid $28,000 a year. Council members are paid $8,000 a year.

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Sager may have to withdraw from the race. He is awaiting an opinion from the State Ethics Commission on whether his job with the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development creates an unavoidable conflict with the duties of a council member.

If Sager has to withdraw from the election, the Washington County Democratic Central Committee would choose a replacement candidate for the general election ballot, according to Hagerstown City Clerk Anna Pennesi.

Among those who fell short in their primary campaigns, Larry A. Vaughn and Ira P. Kauffman Jr. said this would be their last campaigns as candidates. Vaughn and Kauffman, both Democrats, served on the City Council during the 1970s, and Vaughn has been a candidate in every city election since.

Paul H. Toothman, who came in sixth in the Republican council primary, plans to run for another elected office in the future.

Steve Zaks, who ran seventh in the Republican council primary, said it's too early to say whether he would run again.

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