Democrats are scheduled to meet later this month to pick candidates to fill vacancies in two of the top offices in Kennebec County.

County Democrats will meet Oct. 21 to fill the openings created last month by the death of District 1 Commissioner Beverly Daggett and the resignation of Sheriff Randall Liberty, who was tapped to be the new warden of the Maine State Prison in Warren.

Nominations to fill the openings close Oct. 9. Interim Sheriff Ryan Reardon, who served as chief deputy under Liberty for the past two years, is the only person to submit nomination papers so far, said Richard Davies, treasurer for the Kennebec County Democrats. Former state legislator Patsy Crockett, of Augusta, and Augusta City Councilor Patrick Paradis have submitted their names to fill Daggett’s seat.

The Kennebec County Democratic Committee will select from the candidates a nomination to forward to Gov. Paul LePage, who has final authority to make the appointments. Liberty is a Democrat, as was Daggett.

Commissioner candidates must live in one of the represented communities: Augusta, Chelsea, China, Manchester, Sidney, Vassalboro and Windsor. Commissioner candidates need only submit their name to Davies for consideration.

Candidates for sheriff are required to send a resume and letters of recommendation in addition to the letter of intent, said Rita Moran, chairwoman of the Kennebec County Democratic Committee.

Residents do not have to belong to the Democratic party to be eligible for either the commissioner’s position or the sheriff’s, and state law requires candidates for sheriff vacancies be considered “without regard to political affiliation,” but practically speaking, only Democrats will be nominated, Moran said.

“Policy and practice would require them to be Democrats,” she said.

Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap said after Liberty’s resignation last month that state law governs the filling of vacancies for offices such as sheriff, and that the interim sheriff and commissioner chosen by LePage would serve until the end of 2016. There will be a special election in November 2016 to fill the offices for the remainder of Liberty’s terms, which is scheduled to end in 2018. Daggett’s term was scheduled to end in 2016.

Crockett served two terms in the House of Representatives and is a former lobbyist for the Maine Sheriffs’ Association and Maine county commissioners. She is retired from John Hancock Financial Services, where she was an office supervisor. A lifelong resident of Augusta and a Cony High School graduate, Crockett is married to Robert Crockett, a former Kennebec County treasurer.

Paradis was in the Maine House of Representatives from 1978 to 1994, serving as assistant majority leader the last two terms. He was Kennebec County treasurer from 1998 to 2006 and in 2007 began the first of three terms on the Augusta City Council representing Ward 3. His tenure will end next year, when term limits will force him to leave that office. Paradis served on the Kennebec County budget committee representing District 1 in the spring. Retired since 2010, Paradis was a part-time instructor at the University of Maine in Augusta for 13 years and worked in state government in the area of state employee health care for seven years in Gov. John Baldacci’s administration.

Reardon has worked in law enforcement for 21 years, the last nine with the Kennebec County Sheriff’s Office, where he began as a deputy. Reardon has worked as detective, drug investigator and sergeant before taking over as assistant jail administrator. Reardon served with the Waterville Police Department for 11 years before joining Kennebec County. Reardon has 2,000 hours of in-service training.

Members of the county Democratic Committee will vote at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 21 at the Plumbers and Pipefitters Union Hall at 21 Gabriel Drive in Augusta. Only committee members may vote, but Alicia Barnes, the committee’s vice chairwoman, said those who are not members who wish to vote may attend the regular committee meeting at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 15 in the meeting room of the Kennebec County office at 125 State St. to be considered for membership.

“Any Democrat in good standing who lives in Kennebec County is eligible to become a member,” Barnes said.

Craig Crosby — 621-5642

[email protected]

Twitter: @CraigCrosby4

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