Vargo, Wilkerson seek new terms in county offices

By The Mercury

Two incumbent county office holders have declared their intentions to seek new terms.

Riley County Atty. Barry Wilkerson filed Wednesday for re-election to a third term in that position. County clerk Rich Vargo confirmed today that his name, too, will be on the ballot for a new term. Both are Republicans.

Wilkerson was elected in 2004 and re-elected without opposition in 2008. He is the only candidate to file for the office thus far in 2012.

Vargo has been county clerk since 1996, having succeeded Ilene Colbert in the office. He has generally been re-elected without opposition three times, including in 2008.

The pair join register of deeds Deb Regester and treasurer Eileen King as declared candidates for office. Second District county commissioner Al Johnson have not yet declared his intention with respect to the 2012 election. Third District commissioner Karen McCulloh, whose term also expires at the end of the year, has said she will not seek re-election. Two Republicans, Dave Fiser and Ron Wells, have filed for McCulloh’s seat.

Wilkerson said he decided to seek a third term because “I still enjoy the job (and) working with people in the community.”

He said the experience was heightened by dealing with cases involving people “who have turned their lives around” after being involved in drugs or other criminal activity. “I get some enjoyment out of that as well,” he said.

The filing deadline for local offices is June 1.

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