State rep in Warren County gears up to run for county commission

Franklin councilman expected to run for open state seat

State Rep. Ron Maag, facing term limits in the Ohio House of Representatives, is already planning his next political stop.

Maag, chairman of the House State Government Committee, has pulled petitions to run for the Warren County Commission during the presidential primary election next March.

Maag would be running for Commissioner Pat South’s seat.

South, who is not running again, said she learned of Maag’s intentions at an event for Scott Lipps, the Franklin councilman who is said to be planning to run for Maag’s seat in the statehouse.

Maag, R-Salem-Twp., is serving his fourth term in the Ohio House and is subject to term limits. He represents much of Warren County.

State Sen. Shannon Jones, R-Clearcreek Twp., is another local state lawmaker weighing a run for commissioner due to term limits, South said.

“Term limitations have really changed the landscape,” said South, who will have been a commissioner for 24 years. “You never went back. You always kept going up or stayed at the same level.”

Jones and Lipps could not be reached for comment.

No one else has pulled petitions for either office.

Maag pulled petitions on May 3, according to election records.

“I’m exploring all my options,” Maag said.

Former Commissioner Mike Killburn said he is considering a run for South’s seat as well as Maag’s seat.

“It’s awful early to pull petitions,” he said. “I’m weighing my options, too.”

Ray Warrick, chairman of the Warren County Republican Party, also said he expected Lipps to run for Maag’s House seat.

He declined to identify other potential candidates.

“I guess we will just have to see,” Warrick said.

On Tuesday, the Warren County GOP was scheduled to meet to discuss how to review candidates for endorsement in the November election. More than 50 people have pulled petitions for that election.

The deadline to run in the Nov. 3 general election is 4 p.m., Aug. 5.

Barnie Wright, a former official with Lebanon Citizen’s National Bank, has already pulled petitions to run for Warren County treasurer in the March 2016 primary.

The deadline to file for the March primary is 4 p.m., Dec. 9.

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