Special election to replace Rep. Bunch will be Dec. 20, governor announces

11/11/2011 09:00 AM

Potential candidates hoping to replace the injured former state Rep. Dewayne Bunch in House District 82 can mark their calendars for Dec. 20, when the special election to replace Bunch will be held.

Bunch, a first term Republican lawmaker from Williamsburg, represents Whitley and part of Laurel county in the state House of Representatives.

Bunch was injured earlier this year trying to break up a fight at Whitley County High School, where he is a teacher. In the course of the fight, Bunch was knocked to the ground and sustained head injuries.

The result of those injuries led Bunch to decide to resign his seat on Oct. 26. And in a quiet news release, Gov. Steve Beshear announced the special election to replace Bunch would be on Dec. 20 of this year.

The odd date is due to a variety of reasons. First, with the state electing constitutional officers earlier this week, voting machines are required to be locked 30 days after the election day. That meant machines wouldn’t be available to be touched until Dec. 8.

In addition, sheriffs in the affected counties, Whitley and Laurel, must be notified of an election date 35 days before the election.

In the release, Beshear said he picked the date, five days before Christmas, in order to give residents of that district representation in the 2012 legislative session.

“Holding the special election in December means citizens of Whitley County and those in the Laurel County portion of the 82nd district will have representation in the next session of the General Assembly,” Beshear said in a statement. “This session will review multiple issues important to our state, including approving a budget. It is critical that all Kentuckians have a voice in the House of Representatives.”

The winner of the Dec. 20 election will take office immediately after the results are certified by the state Board of Elections and after taking the oath of office.

The 2012 General Assembly starts on Jan. 3, 2012.

-Reporting by Kenny Colston


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