CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. — Five months before candidates officially can file for the 2012 election, Jefferson County Commissioner Frances Morgan said Friday she will seek a second term on the five-member panel.
The candidate-filing period for the May 8 primary begins Jan. 9, 2012, and ends at midnight on Jan. 28, 2012, according to Jefferson County Voter Registration Office records.
The general election will be Nov. 6, 2012.
"It was amazing to be elected once, but it's different running for re-election," said Morgan, 47, of Summit Point, W.Va. "The first time, you're taking a chance, but running for re-election means the voters can evaluate your record and pass judgment."
Jefferson County is divided into five magisterial districts — Middleway, Charles Town, Kabletown, Shepherdstown and Harpers Ferry. Each of the five commissioners represents a district, but voting is at large.
Morgan, one of four Democrats on the commission, represents the Middleway District, the only one of the five with a single open seat. She first was elected in 2006.
Morgan said she's seeking a second term because she loves the job and the benefit package it offers. The salary is about $40,000 per year.
She said as a commissioner, her responsibility is to the 54,000 Jefferson County residents more than it is to the bureaucracy that runs the $20 million county government.
"My job is to represent everybody and not just to get sucked into thinking about county government," she said.
A lawyer by profession, although not practicing, Morgan said she wants to continue to give the county the benefit of her legal knowledge. She wants to push for full use of the satellite office of the judiciary's day-reporting center for nonviolent offenders. The more offenders sent there rather than to jail will help save some of the $1 million annual cost of housing county prisoners.
She also wants to continue her efforts toward protecting the county's historic heritage and its farmland.
Morgan said she raised $33,000 for her 2006 run, when she beat incumbent Jane Tabb by 350 votes.
She is separated and has one daughter, Rebecca, 14.
Morgan owns and runs Aylmere Farm, her 165-acre cattle-and-crop farm in Summit Point, property her father, Aylmer Morgan, bought in 1946 after retiring from the U.S. Navy.