Update: Newberry Opts Out of McCracken Judge Executive Race

Aug 11, 2014

Credit Lance Dennee

UPDATE: The Paducah Sun is reporting incumbent McCracken County Judge Executive Van Newberry has decided not to run for re-election. Newberry recently changed his party to Independent and had until 4:00 this afternoon to file his paperwork to seek a third term.  Yesterday, retiring district 2 State Senator Bob Leeper filed his paperwork to seek the Judge Executive post. 

In a statement printed in the Sun Newberry said: 

I am proud of my hard work and accomplishments over the last eight years.... I applaud anyone who is willing to step up and take on the task of the county judge-executive. It is not an easy job! If you do this job right, 50-60 hour weeks are much more common than 40 hour weeks. This job requires a huge commitment and will take time away from your family and friends. So, I wish the best of luck to whoever is in this position on January 1, 2015.

Newberry, who is facing felony charges related to changes to a zoning map, said he will be acquitted of those charges when he goes to trial.

ORIGINAL STORY: Outgoing 2nd District state Sen. Bob Leeper has officially filed to run for McCracken County Judge-Executive this fall.

Leeper announced last year that he would not seek another term in Frankfort, where he served Ballard, McCracken and Marshall counties for more than two decades.

Leeper says he’ll use the short campaign to learn the system of county government.

“This will be my third position in a different level of government and so, I’m going to spend my time listening, talking to others who have held the position," Leeper said. "I’ve already begun that process. I’m going to look at where the taxpayers’ money is being spent now and I’m going to look at where it needs to continue being spent and any changes we might be able to make in that. And trying to build a consensus with the other commissioners who are elected in the fall.”

Two-term judge-executive Van Newberry has through Tuesday afternoon to file his petition to run.

Newberry, who is awaiting trial for alleged zoning misconduct, previously told WKMS that a third term would be his last.

Besides Leeper, Democrat Jeff Hines will be on the ballot for the November 4 election.