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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

New Putnam County officials eager to get to work

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

It was an evening full of excitement, especially for the new Putnam County Auditor Lorie Hallett and new District 1 Comissioner David Berry who both will take office beginning Jan. 1.
There are 55 days from Election Day until Jan. 1, when Putnam County officials take on their new duties.

For the newest county commissioner, the time can't go fast enough.

"I kind of wish we could get started tomorrow -- or at least next Monday," new District 1 commissioner David Berry said.

Republicans Berry and auditor candidate Lorie Hallett took the only two contested countywide races in Tuesday's general election, joining six unopposed Republican candidates in a clean sweep of county offices.

Hallett expressed an eagerness to take office similar to Berry's.

"I'm just glad to get in there and get started," the Greencastle resident said.

The former Greencastle Township assessor, Hallett has worked in the courthouse as a deputy in the assessor's office and, since July, in the auditor's office.

She said the experience with outgoing auditor Stephanie Campbell and her fellow deputies has helped prepare her for the job.

"I think the transition's going to be fine," Hallett said. "I just want to make myself visible to the taxpayers."

Hallett took more than 66 percent of the vote, besting Democrat Wilma Phipps 8,865-4,480. She also took 29 of a possible 31 precincts.

Berry enjoyed similar success over Democrat Jeffrey Blaydes and Independent Charlie Boller. Berry took 29 precincts and 7,610 votes, compared to Blaydes' 3,925 votes and Boller's 1,709.

"I'm very grateful to the people who came out and voted today," Berry said. "I want to first thank all the voters and then all the people who voted for me.

"It's been enlightening. I'm already fortunate to know people from all four corners of the county. It was nice getting out and seeing people you don't get to see all the time."

Blaydes also viewed the election process as an educational experience, saying he had learned quite a bit while campaigning throughout the county.

"I got to meet a lot of people I didn't know, and for that I'm grateful," Berry said. "You put yourself out there for all to see and that's quite an experience.

"It's really an enjoyable experience -- a lot of hard work, but something you get a lot out of."

In her bid for auditor, Phipps acknowledged running as a Democrat in Putnam County to be an uphill battle. She said she was not surprised at the outcome but had hoped for better results.

"I think it's too bad more people don't vote for change because we need some change in Putnam County," Phipps said.

Even in defeat, Phipps said her campaign was a positive experience.

"I've learned a lot," Phipps said. "I think I'm a more informed voter."

Republicans were unopposed for the remaining six Putnam County positions.

* Treasurer Sharon Owens was elected to a second term with 10,515 votes.

* Deputy coroner Dave Brown will take over the coroner's office with 10,147 votes.

* Don Walton, who previously spent 28 years as the District 1 county commissioner, will return to the office, taking 10,297 votes.

* The three county council at-large positions will be filled by Gene Beck (9,124 votes), Larry Parker (7,954) and Phil Gick (7,750). Parker and Gick currently serve on the council, while Beck will transition from the county commissioners to the council.

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vid good luck in all you set out to do.I am sure we the people of putnman county can count on you to give 100%. thank you in advance just in case I forget.Dan

-- Posted by Daniel Schoolcraft on Wed, Nov 7, 2012, at 11:35 AM

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