Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local News

May 7, 2013

House race in central Kentucky gets interesting

Independent candidate enters race

FRANKFORT — The race to fill a state House vacancy in the 56th District special election got a little more crowded and a little more complicated Tuesday.

John-Mark Hack, 46, of Woodford County filed as an independent in the June 25 special election to fill a vacancy created when Rep. Carl Rollins, D-Midway, resigned to take a job with the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority.

Hack, a former official in the administration of former Democratic Gov. Paul Patton, will face Republican Lyen Crews and Democrat James L. Kay II. The district takes in all of Woodford County and parts of Fayette and Franklin Counties. All three live in Woodford County.

It’s an important race because of the relatively narrow margin of control by Democrats going into the 2014 legislative elections, a year Republicans have set their sights on taking over the majority in the House for the first time since 1920. Currently, Democrats hold a 54 to 45 majority after Rollins’ resignation.

Kay, 30, is an attorney, chairman of the Woodford County Democratic Party and a former aide to Democratic House leadership. Crews, 51, is a financial administrator for Midway College. Hack is in the food business and helped establish the Governor’s Office for Agriculture Policy in Patton’s administration.

He said he’s been registered as an independent since December of 2007 and was previously registered at one time or another as a Democrat and as a Republican — “but that (Republican registration) was a long time ago.”

Hack said he expects the two major parties to spend up to $100,000 on the race but he won’t need that much.

“I don’t think we need to raise those levels of resources to get our message out to an electorate that’s already disaffected from their way of doing business,” Hack said. “So if we can raise $50,000 to $60,000, I think that’ll put us in a very competitive position.”

He said he’s in the race “to win” and doesn’t see himself as a spoiler. He said he’s running to lead a change in “the culture of arrogance and self-interest that prevails in Frankfort” and to “send a loud and unmistakable message that we are fed up with the corruption and backroom deal-making that’s left our commonwealth lagging behind and teetering on the edge of bankruptcy.”

As an independent, Hack said he will be “free of the influences of party machinery” and as an independent in “a narrowly divided chamber (his) is certainly not a powerless vote.”

Hack has been associated with a group which opposes “predatory gambling” and he said predatory, addictive forms of gambling won’t solve the state’s problems.

RONNIE ELLIS writes for CNHI News Service and is based in Frankfort. Reach him at rellis@cnhi.com. Follow CNHI News Service stories on Twitter at www.twitter.com/cnhifrankfort.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Flatwoods mayoral debate set for Tuesday

    A public debate among the candidates seeking to become the next mayor of Flatwoods will take place next week.

    April 22, 2014

  • Ashland couple indicted on grave violation charges

     A man and a woman from Ashland have been indicted for allegedly stealing brass flower vases from graves at Rose Hill Burial Park.

    April 22, 2014

  • South Shore clerk gives updates on city building bids, sewer project

    City officials may not have to wait much longer to move from their temporary offices on Main Street into a shiny, new building.

    April 22, 2014

  • Fate of stray animals in Carter County questioned

    Stray animals in Carter County may be disappearing because no one seems to know exactly where they are going.

    April 22, 2014

  • Recovery center finds home

    The mayor of Grayson said he isn’t concerned about the money a new recovery center will funnel into the city, although he is deeply appreciative of what the proposed facility may be able to offer “people who really need help” recovering from the effects of drug and alcohol abuse.

    April 22, 2014

  • Olive Hill man charged with shooting wife during dispute

    A Carter County man has been arrested for allegedly shooting his wife in the neck during a domestic dispute.
    Robert Tackett, 47, of Olive Hill, was lodged in the Carter County Detention Center on Monday, charged with attempted murder-domestic violence, Kentucky State Police at Ashland said.

    April 22, 2014

  • Two of three Greenup commission seats on ballot

    Two of three commission seats are up for grabs in Greenup County this fall, and both will involve primary contests to determine the ballot lineup in the November election.

    April 22, 2014

  • 0423attmurder_tackett.jpg Olive Hill man charged with attempted murder

    A Carter County man has been arrested for allegedly shooting his wife in the neck during a domestic dispute.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Rotary updated on Alliance

    Ed Neely, president of the Ashland Rotary Club and chairman of the Ashland Alliance, addressed Rotarians in both capacities during the Monday meeting to give an update on the organization’s recent progress.

    April 21, 2014

  • Prater has been satisfying fans’ hunger for 40 years

    Debbie Prater has satisfied thousands of athletes’, parents’ and fans’ snacking desires for nearly 360 months.
    That’s just about 40 years of serving nachos, popcorn, chili dogs, water and soda from Lewis County’s football, basketball and baseball concession stands, and Prater is retiring after this year’s last pitch.

    April 21, 2014