MAYO —It may be an election year, but there is no rush to get started in Lafayette County.

Despite a number of seats up for election this year, including all of the county’s constitutional officers as well as several county commission and school board seats, Supervisor of Elections Travis Hart said there is only one local candidate that has already filed for the August 18 primary.

“That is the height of it right now,” Hart said of the lone candidate. “In Lafayette County, we don’t get started too early.”

That local candidate is Kyle Johnson, a Republican who is running for sheriff.

Otherwise there are no candidates yet in the local races, which includes clerk of court, supervisor of elections, property appraiser, tax collector, superintendent of schools as well as Districts 1, 3 and 5 on the county commission and the District 2 and 4 seats on the school board.

“There’s plenty of time and folks over here don’t really like to see signs up before June, so there really is no real rush to get out there too early,” Hart added. “That’s just always kind of been the Lafayette County MO.”

The state races, meanwhile, have candidates already running.

Neal Dunn, the Republican incumbent from Panama City, is seeking re-election to the District 2 seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Also seeking that position are Democrats Willie Jefferson Anderson Jr. (Perry), Connor Oswald (Tallahassee) and Franklin Schuler Jr. (Bronson).

In the State House, Jason Shoaf, the Port St. Joe Republican that won a special election last year for the District 7 seat, is running once again. As is Ryan Terrell, a Democrat from Tallahassee, who lost in that special election to Shoaf.

Jennifer Bradley, a Republican from Fleming Island, is seeking the seat her husband, Rob, has held in the State Senate from District 5. Also currently running for that position are Trenton Democrat Melina Rayna Svanhild Farley-Barrett and Libertarian Matthew Charles McCary, of Orange Park.

Running for the State Attorney position that Jeff Siegmeister resigned in December are Republicans John Foster Durrett and Christina Nieto Seifert, both from Lake City.

Clifton “Cliff” William Wilson Jr., a Republican from Lake City, is the lone candidate currently for the circuit’s public defender position.

Incumbents Greg Parker, Mark Feagle and Leandra G. Johnson are currently unopposed for their circuit judge seats.

The Presidential Preference Primary is set for March 17 with a deadline to register of Feb. 18. Hart said voters need to make sure they have their political party set for that election as well.

Jamie Wachter is the editor of the Suwannee Democrat, Jasper News and Mayo Free Press.

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