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Hillview goes non-partisan in future races

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By Thomas Barr

 HILLVIEW - You will no longer need to worry about party affiliation when you go to the polls to cast a ballot for races in one northern Bullitt County city.

The city of Hillview is the latest in a long line of municipalities which are doing away with partisan politics.

The Hillview City Council voted 5-1 to form non-partisan offices for mayor and town board. This will be effective for any future election.

Councilmember Karen Johnson said she didn’t understand the need for such a measure, especially since the city didn’t have enough candidates to force a primary this year.

Mayor Jim Eadens said it was a rare occurrence that this spring there were not enough Democrats to force a primary. If more than six candidates of any party filed in January, a primary would be held and the top six would advance to the fall general election.

Councilmember Kim Whitlock said she wanted to go non-partisan previously but the process never reached that point. 

Johnson, who was unopposed as the lone Republican on the ticket, thought it might be best to allow the new councilmembers decide when they take office in January.

The council moved forward with the vote, which was approved 5-1.

Under the non-partisan format, the filing deadline would be on the second Tuesday in August. There would be no designation on the ballot for any political party in the city races.

Eadens said the elimination of the primary would lower the cost for candidates since they won’t need to run two races. Also, there is elimination of having some political signs in the city until the general election.

Johnson was joined by fellow incumbents Whitlock and Jo-Ann Wick, as well as newcomers Randall Hill and Lisa Boggs, for a swearing-in ceremony.

When officials gather at their Jan. 21 meeting, one item to be conducted will be the appointment of a sixth councilmember.

David Conn, who won re-election, will resign effective Jan. 1, 2013. Since he is retiring after 16 years as a county employee for the planning and zoning commission, he must also resign from the city council. This is due to retirement benefit issues with the state system.

Conn, as well as Greg Burton and Tim Boggs, who chose not to run for re-election, was honored by Eadens for their service on the city council the past two years.

The council has 30 days to name a replacement. After that, the appointment would go to the governor’s office.