Lawson only person to file for special election

ALPENA -Barring a possible write-in candidate stepping forward, it appears that Alpena County Commissioner Eric Lawson will run unopposed during a special election in August to permanently fill the seat vacated by the death of Rich Fortier on March 13. Lawson was appointed over two other candidates to fill the seat until the election, which will be held in Ossineke and Sanborn townships.

The deadline to file for the election was 4 p.m. Tuesday, but County Clerk Bonnie Friedrichs said nobody other than Lawson filed. She said although Lawson will be the only name on the ballot, there is still time for others to register to be a write in candidate.

“I guess I thought there would be more people that would run, especially since there were three that came forward to be interviewed and appointed to begin with. I figured at least one of them would run,” Friedrichs said. “Someone could still run as a write-in candidate. They have until July 26 at 4 p.m. to declare.”

Lawson, if elected to represent District No. 8, only will be allowed to serve the balance of Fortier’s term which was cut short because of his death. He would then have to run once more and win to earn a full two year term. Friedrichs said the current term for the District No. 8 commissioner’s seat will expire on Dec. 31. The same as the other seven seats.

Friedrich said the county will have to pay to have the special election, but said she is unsure of how much it will cost as of yet.”

Steve Schulwitz can be reached via email at or by phone at 358-5689. Follow Steve on Twitter ss_alpenanews. Read his blog, Upon Further Review … at