GREENCASTLE -- When former Putnam County Commissioner Jim Baird was elected to the Indiana House of Representatives on Nov. 2, it came with an unexpected side effect. Upon election, Baird was no longer a commissioner -- effective immediately.
According the Putnam County Republican Party chair Larry Sutton, Baird became what is known as a "legislative embryo." With the Indiana General Assembly convening for Organization Day on Nov. 16, Baird was not eligible to complete his term as commissioner, which will end on Dec. 31.
This leaves the Republican Party with three spots to fill on the county's legislative and fiscal bodies: Baird's commissioner seat and the at-large council seats of Opal Sutherlin and Nancy Fogle.
Fogle is leaving her seat on the council after two years, having been elected to take over for Baird as commissioner. Sutherlin can no longer serve as a councilor because she was elected county recorder.
As such, the party will conduct a caucus to fill the three positions at 9 a.m. Dec. 4. The caucus will determine who will serve the last month of Baird's term as well as the last two years of the terms of Sutherlin and Fogle.
Fogle has submitted a letter resigning as a council member effective midnight Nov. 16, while Sutherlin has resigned effective midnight Dec. 31.
Because Fogle has already been elected to fill the commissioner's seat, it is assumed she will also win the caucus for the last month of Baird's term.
However, the party is seeking applicants to fill the two at-large council seats.
Anyone interested in applying for the positions must file the appropriate forms in the voter registration office in the Putnam County Courthouse and send a letter of interest and intent to Larry G. Sutton, Chair; Putnam County GOP; 4314 W. CR 550S; Greencastle, IN 46135.
All forms and letters must be filed and received no later than 72 hours before the caucus.