I hate to speculate, even when it’s in this column, which, by its very nature, sometimes lends itself to speculation. But I did it last week in this space when I speculated that Platte County Presiding Commissioner Jason Brown was not going to back away from a fight and would file for re-election. I had no facts or actual confirmation from Brown himself — we’ll get back to that in a sec — but just a gut feeling. Pure speculation, in other words. Now, I had this feeling even though I had heard a few rumblings that Brown might not join the Republican primary party that as of Tuesday includes former Platte County Second District Commissioner Jim Plunkett and current District 14 State Rep. Ron Schieber, both of whom want Brown’s job. Apparently, Brown is willing to give it up. And no, this is not more speculation. People whom I trust and respect have told me the past several days that Brown has accepted a job in the private sector and is ready to leave public office. They say it’s a done deal. Of course, it would be nice to hear yea or nay from the man himself, but for the first time in the nearly 15 years I’ve known Brown — going back to his days as the City of Platte City’s Public Works Director — he has not returned my calls. Let me repeat: calls, as in more than one, made over the course of the past several days. So, I’m left to assume that what I’m hearing is true. Brown will not file for re-election and Plunkett and Schieber will battle it out in August for the Republican nomination for the November ballot. I wonder if there will be a contested Democratic primary for the presiding commissioner’s post? Possibly, but based on the past few elections, local Dems have barely mustered one candidate for some open County offices, let alone crowding a ballot for a primary. Hmmmmm .... maybe it’s time a newspaper publisher put his money where his ink is and crashed the party. Am I kidding? Probably. In the meantime, anybody know a good campaign manager? •••••••••• Speaking of putting your name on the dotted line, Tuesday marked the first day of the filing period for the County and State primary election in August. As mentioned, two Republicans not named Brown filed for Platte County Presiding Commissioner. As of our Tuesday evening deadline, here are the other filings for County offices, most of whom we have told you about in previous issues and Republicans all: Nancy Armstrong, county clerk; incumbent Gloria Boyer, recorder of deeds; incumbent Eric Zahnd, prosecuting attorney; incumbent Kevin Robinson, auditor. The filing period runs through March 25 and we will keep you posted of future flings. PHOTOGRAPHER INVASION The City of Platte City has announced it has landed the 66th Annual University of Missouri Photo Workshop. The event, set for Sept. 21-27, will feature MU officials working with 40-plus professional photographers from across the USA and the globe. They will spend the week documenting life in Platte City and the surrounding area, culminating in a large public photo exhibit at week’s end. Stay tuned. SHINING A SPOTLIGHT That’s what we’re going to do next week, when we publish our annual Spotlight: Platte County special section. This is the special publication formerly known as Progress that we renamed last year because ..... well, we wanted to. It will feature plenty of advertorials from area businesses eager to tell their stories or promote their goods and services. It will also include interesting, informative and entertaining features and some commentary. And it’s all included in the cover price of next week’s issue. Don't miss it. YOU CAN’T DO THAT A political action committee (PAC) that sends out those neat little neon postcards right before elections distorting the facts and smearing its opponents was told that recently by the Missouri Ethics Commission. Find out which PAC it was, what it did and the slap on the wrist the Ethics Commission gave it in next week’s issue SPORTS NUGGETS • The Sochi Winter Olympics ended last Sunday, which means that now we can not care again for four years about such things as ice skating, bobsled racing and curling. • I saw some great competition and hard-to-beat emotion at the MSHSAA Wrestling Championships in Columbia last weekend. Park Hill won a second straight team title on a clutch pin by junior Colston DiBlasi and that was good stuff. But Platte County sophomore Ethan Karsten’s upset win over a three-time state champ from Oak Park — and his reaction afterwards — was priceless. • I wish I had a dollar for every time KU overhyped freshman Andrew Wiggins’ picture has been in the KC Star the past year. I know this is KU country, but give me a break.
Thanks for reading. Lee Stubbs is owner/publisher of The Citizen. He may be reached by e-mail at email@example.com or by calling 858-5154. Follow him on Twitter @leejstubbs.