No election is needed

The resignation of Ricki Osborn as Webster County attorney to enter private practice leaves a vacancy in that important law enforcement post.

The Webster County Board of Supervisors has two options. It could appoint someone to this job or it could schedule a special election. The cost of an election would be in the neighborhood of $20,000.

Residents who feel an election should be held can mandate that by petition if about 1,840 sign a petition calling for a vote within 14 days of an appointment being made by the supervisors.

The Messenger strongly urges the supervisors to fill the position by appointment rather than utilize precious taxpayer dollars for an election. At least one strong internal candidate exists who would do just fine in this role – Cori Kuhn Coleman, currently an assistant county attorney. Coleman has been part of the prosecutorial team locally since 2006 and is widely respected within law enforcement and legal circles.

The person appointed – and possibly other candidates – will go before voters at the next regularly scheduled elections in 2014. That is the process that represents the most sensible approach in this case.