Miller to run for Circuit Court clerk


Former Manchester Mayor Phillip R. Miller filed yesterday to run for Carroll County Circuit Court clerk.

Mr. Miller, 56, will be the only Democrat on the ballot in the Sept. 13 primary.

There are two Republican candidates: incumbent Larry W. Shipley and Diane O'Leary.

The deadline to file for office was July 5, but state law allows political parties to draft enough candidates to fill available slots on the ticket. Yesterday was the deadline.

The Carroll County Democratic Central Committee succeeded in drafting candidates for two other races -- state's attorney and Orphans' Court judge.

Mr. Miller, who lives outside Manchester, said yesterday that he had considered running for the clerk's job earlier but was involved in a plumbing and home improvement business he and son started four years ago.He said he works part time with the company but would stop if he is elected clerk.

He said Mr. Shipley, 49, of Westminster has been in office too long. "We're all for term limitations," Mr. Miller said.

Mr. Shipley has filled the post since 1978.

The Circuit Court clerk oversees employees who process criminal and civil cases and manage thousands of court files and land records.

Democratic Central Committee Chairman L. Gregory Pecoraro said Mr. Miller is a good candidate for the job.

"As former mayor of Manchester, he brings a lot of administrative experience to the race," he said.

Mr. Miller served three terms as the town's mayor, from 1975 to 1987.

In 1986, he ran for one of three county commissioner seats and came in last among six candidates in the general election.

In 1990, Mr. Miller was elected to the Democratic Central Committee. He is running for a second term this year.

Candidates for central committees may run for other offices.

The other Republican candidate for Circuit Court clerk, Diane O'Leary, 56, of Westminster, ran against Mr. Shipley four years ago as a Democrat. She had worked for Mr. Shipley as a deputy clerk.

In other races, the Democrats drafted Westminster lawyer Linda A. Holmes to run for state's attorney. Twenty-year incumbent Thomas E. Hickman, a Republican, will face one of his former employees, Frederick County Assistant State's Attorney Jerry F. Barnes, in the primary.

In the Orphans' Court race, the Democrats nominated former acting school Superintendent Robert E. Kersey. He will join two other Democrats, John Barnes and Naomi Benzil, on the primary ballot. Carroll has three Orphans' Court judgeships.

There are four Republican candidates, including the three incumbents: Walter T. Haines Jr., Albert W. Selby and Harrison E. Utz. The other Republican candidate is Dorothy V. "Dottie" Utz.

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