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Butte candidates file for election

Butte Justice of the Peace Jimm Kilmer files for re-election with other candidates running for various openings in local government on Thursday morning at the clerk and recorder's office in the Butte-Silver Bow County Courthouse.

Bill Everett, who won his first term as chief executive in Anaconda-Deer Lodge County in 2016, filed for re-election Thursday — the first day of candidate filing in Montana’s 2020 elections this year.

In Butte-Silver Bow, 13 people had filed by late Thursday afternoon, including Dave Palmer, who is seeking a second term as chief executive, and Brendan McDonough, a commissioner who is also running for that job. They had previously announced their intentions to run.

Ten of the 13 were incumbent office holders, including Sheriff Ed Lester, Assessor Dan Fisher and Treasurer Lori Baker-Patrick. As of 4:30 p.m., only one person — Matt Moore — had filed for one of six Council of Commissioner seats on the ballot this year.

Sally Hollis, Butte-Silver Bow’s clerk and recorder, said she got to the office around 7:30 a.m. and before filing opened a half hour later, “there were already six people here ready to file.”

They included City Court Judge Jerome McCarthy, who was appointed to the bench in 2018 and is now running for a full, four-year term, and Jimm Kilmer, who is seeking a second term as one of Butte’s two justices of the peace.

When asked why they were there at 8 a.m. on Thursday when everyone has until March 9 to file, McCarthy said, “We wanted to let the community know we are serious and we are ready to get out there.”

Kilmer nodded in agreement and said, “We’ve got work to do.”

Everett defeated incumbent Connie Ternes-Daniels by more than 600 votes out of more than 4,100 cast for the top government job in Anaconda-Deer Lodge County four years ago.

Everett said the county made strides on several fronts in his first term, including Superfund negotiations and infrastructure improvements. The county has repaved 64 blocks of streets, plans at least 35 more this year, but “there is still much work to be done,” he said.

The county has attracted new jobs, including 40 when Intercontinental Truck Body Co. was recruited to Anaconda, Everett said, and he and others helped save the Anaconda Job Corps Civilian Conservation Center from threats of closure by the U.S. Department of Labor.

“Through persistence and contacts, we were able to keep the Job Corps open,” he said.

City-county crews also got Anaconda through a “Snowmageddon,” when the city got more than 3 feet of snow in the span of a few days in late February last year, he said.

Moore, a professional engineer who oversaw Butte’s sewer system for several years before taking a private-sector job in late 2018, filed for the District 4 council seat. Incumbent John Sorich says he plans to seek re-election to the seat.

Hollis is not seeking a fourth term as clerk and recorder, but on Thursday, her deputy, Linda Sajor-Joyce, filed for the job. Hollis will finish her term out through Dec. 31 this year after a busy presidential year with numerous county offices on the ballot, too.

Other local incumbents who filed Thursday were Auditor Wendy McGrath, Clerk of Courts Tom Powers, Coroner Lori Durkin and Public Administrator Janice Casarotto.

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