KEYSER - Del. Gary Howell of the 56th District, House of Delegates, was the first person to file candidacy papers in the West Virginia Secretary of State's office Monday morning.

By Liz Beavers
lbeavers@newstribune.info
Tribune Managing Editor
KEYSER - Del. Gary Howell of the 56th District, House of Delegates, was the first person to file candidacy papers in the West Virginia Secretary of State’s office Monday morning.
Locally, county commission president Jerry Whisner was the only one to file in the county clerk’s office.
Monday was the first day in the filing period for those wishing to run for office in 2018. The last day is Saturday, Jan. 27.
Every seat in the West Virginia House of Delegates comes open this year, so all three delegates who represent Mineral County or portions of it will be up for re-election.
On the Senate side, 17 of the total 34 seats will come open. For Mineral County, that means the seats currently occupied by Sen. Dave Sypolt of Kingwood (District 14) and Sen. Charles Trump of Berkeley Springs (District 15).
Sen. Craig Blair and Sen. Randy Smith will remain in office for another two years.
So far, Sypolt is the only local senator to file his candidacy papers Monday in Charleston.
In accordance with state elections law, Howell had already filed pre-candidacy papers on Dec. 7, 2016, indicating his intention to run for re-election.
In addition, both Del. Ruth Rowan, representing the 57th Delegate District, had filed pre-candidacy papers on Oct. 23, 2017, and Sen. Charles Trump had filed pre-candidacy papers on Oct. 16, 2017.
On the county level, the county commission seat currently held by Jerry Whisner will come open this year, along with three seats on the board of education - those currently held by Lara Courrier of Keyser, William Ludwick of New Creek and Kevin Watson of Ridgeley.
Since no more than two members of the five-member board of education may be from the same magisterial district, voters may elect only one from District 2 (Keyser area, currently represented by Courrier and Tom Denne) or District 1 (currently represented by Luckwick and Rob Woy), or one from either District 1 or 2 and two from District 3 (Frankfort area - currently represented only by Watson.)
The position of conservation district supervisor and members of the Republican and Democratic executive committees will also be on the county ballot.
The Mineral County Clerk’s office is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, except for Monday, Jan. 15, when they will be closed for Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
The county clerk’s office will also not be open on the last day of filing, Saturday, Jan. 27, but will accept candidacy papers postmarked on that date.
For further information, call the clerk’s office at 304-788-3924 or visit the secretary of state’s website at www.sos.wv.gov.