After being jilted by commission, Watts returns as GOP rep to election board
Marilyn Watts is once again a member of the Fayette County Board of Elections.
From 1998 through last year, Watts served on the three-member elections board as the appointee of the Fayette County Commission.
But in February 2011, the commission voted to replace Watts with political newcomer Addison Lester III. That vote was a split one, backed by Commissioners Lee Hearn, Robert Horgan and Herb Frady and opposed by Commissioners Allen McCarty and Steve Brown.
At the time, the reasoning for keeping Watts was due to her significant experience in the field, as she told the commission that she attended numerous training on the board’s purview: conducting elections in accordance with state and federal law.
Last week, however, Watts was selected to the position by the Fayette County Republican Party. So the commission’s vote Thursday night was to ratify Watts as the GOP’s selection to the board.
Watts is replacing former GOP board of elections representative David Studdard. She joins existing board of elections members Darryl Hicks, who was appointed by the Democratic Party, and Lester, who remains as the county commission’s representative on the elections board.
Lester’s February 2011 appointment drew a bit of a political firestorm nearly two months afterward, after Hearn admitted in April that Lester was “a distant relative” of his. Hearn said Lester is his second cousin and he apologized for not disclosing that prior to the commission’s vote to appoint Lester to the seat.