Candidates begin filing for 2014 election

Published: Monday, February 10, 2014 at 07:40 PM.

When the clock struck noon Monday, a line of would-be candidates ready to make official their intentions to seek public office in 2014 was already forming at the Craven County Board of Elections.

First in line was the longest serving member of the Craven County Board of Commissioners, District 6 Commissioner Lee K. Allen of Havelock, who was filing for his sixth term.

Allen coasted to victory unopposed in the last two elections, but before the day was out he was facing a primary challenge from current Havelock Commissioner George Liner, a Republican, and, if victorious, a November race against a Democrat. The lone Democrat to file is Allen’s neighbor and former Craven School Board member Arland Bell.

“I always try to file first,” said Allen. “I don’t want people to guess about whether I’m running. I’m dead serious, here I come. If you want me, come and get me.”

All seven county commissioner seats are up for election this year, and incumbent Democrat Theron McCabe filed to run in District 5, which includes eastern Craven County and parts of Havelock, including Tucker Creek. No one filed on Monday to oppose the two-term commissioner, but the filing period continues through noon on Feb. 28.

Another county office up for election is Craven County sheriff, and Fred “Chip” Hughes III of Trent Woods, a Republican, came with his wife, Heather, children and campaign supporters to file on Monday. Running on a platform of “more professional, transparent, and accountable local law enforcement,” Hughes filed his initial campaign organizational papers a year ago.

Two New Bern men filed to run for the N.C. House of Representatives District 3 seat. First-term incumbent Michael Speciale, a Republican, and local attorney Robert Elliott “Whit” Whitley Jr., a Democrat, filed for the seat to represent parts of Craven and Pamlico counties.

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