The elections for New Hanover County Commissioner don’t happen until next year, and the filing period for candidates doesn’t open until February, but the race is already getting underway.
In a Facebook posting over the Labor Day weekend, Democratic Candidate Rob Zapple announced his candidacy and updated his campaign website.
It will be the second time local builder and community activist Rob Zapple makes a run for County Commission. Last year, the first-time Democratic candidate watched Republicans Woody White and Beth Dawson win first terms, while lone Democrat Jonathan Barfield held on to his seat.
Zapple says he’s getting the word out early to stop what had become rampant insider speculation and keep the immediate focus on the upcoming municipal race.
“I’d like to send a clear message to all those people who supported me in my last campaign for New Hanover County Commissioner: that I remain committed to all the values and to the work that I think needs to happen for New Hanover County, and that I am clearly intending on running in 2014. Right now, my focus, and, I hope, the focus of the voters, is for the municipal elections for city council and mayor that are coming up this November.”
The two open seats next year include that of ousted Commissioner Brian Berger – which remains unfilled while the legal process plays out, and the seat of Thomas Wolfe, a Republican appointed to take Rick Catlin’s place after Catlin was elected to the State House of Representatives.