Republican County Commissioner Sandie Egley and former Republican treasurer candidate Tom Leydig have been holding private meetings to discuss a possible “reform ticket” of candidates in the Republican party.
Party officials have not been involved in their discussions.
Egley and Leydig were both seen inside the Bureau of Elections today picking up nominating petitions for county office.
Candidates could begin picking up petitions today and can start gathering signatures on Feb. 19. Candidates for county office need to collect a minimum of 250 signatures from registered voters in their political party by March 12 to appear on the ballot.
Both Egley and Leydig remained vague when asked for this article about their plans, with neither confirming or denying rumors about the offices they intend to run for.
Egley stated in an article published by BeaverCountian.com in Jan. 2018 she would not be seeking re-election, although there have been signs in recent days her thinking may be evolving. BeaverCountian.com has previously reported that Egley was considering a run for a row office seat.
Leydig ran for treasurer against Democratic incumbent Connie Javens in 2015, but fell short of unseating her in the general election by 923 votes – 49 % to 51%. Leydig has served on both the finance and audit committees of Heritage Valley Health System, and would likely be making another run for treasurer or entering the race for county controller.
Following the 2015 county elections, Leydig widely blamed his own party for his loss, accusing fellow Republicans of working behind the scenes in support of Democrat Connie Javens to undermine his candidacy. Javens is retiring at this end of this year. Her first deputy, Cebran Netherland, recently switched parties from Democrat to Republican to run for the seat.
Egley is barred by state law from serving as county controller until two years after leaving the office of commissioner. Politicos in both parties spent the day speculating whether she may make a run for treasurer, with Leydig as a controller candidate, or if Egley may seek re-election with Leydig entering as a running mate for commissioner.
Republican Commissioner Dan Camp has announced he will be seeking re-election on the Republican ticket. Long-time independent Jack Manning recently joined the Republican party and announced his candidacy for county commissioner as well.
In Sept. 2017, Egley come out in support of Democratic sheriff candidate Wayne Kress, paving the way for a possible bipartisan “reform slate” of candidates in a general election.
People close to both candidates tell BeaverCountian.com they do not believe either of them have firmly decided on a path forward, but that both appear committed to shaking up this year’s county elections.
Leydig declined public comment for this report, but Egley provided one tantalizing clue about her future plans. As she walked down the hallway after picking up her petitions in the Bureau of Elections, Egley paused to make a brief on-the-record statement to BeaverCountian.com.
“I came into this office with high expectations about what I wanted to accomplish,” she said. “I haven’t been able to accomplish everything that I wanted to, so there’s still work to be done.”