Hamilton County GOP to caucus March 16 to fill vacant council seat

The Hamilton County Republican Party has set a date to vote on a replacement for the open Hamilton County Council at-large seat.

Jim Belden, who had served on the Hamilton County Council since 1993, died Feb. 14 at age 77 after a battle with cancer.

As reported on North of 96th, Hamilton County GOP Chairman Pete Peterson said the caucus is scheduled for March 16. Whoever is selected will only serve out the remaining term. Belden had filed to run for re-election, but his name has been removed from the May primary ballot, according to the Hamilton County election’s office.

Republican incumbents Brad Beaver and Rick McKinney have filed for re-election, and Republicans George Kehl, Jeff Hern and Bill Dennis are also on the ballot.

John Accetturo, former Carmel City Council member, announced last week that he would be putting his name in for consideration for the vacancy. Accetturo served on the Carmel City Council from 2008-2012, and unsuccessfully challenged Carmel Mayor Jim Brainard in the May 2011 primary.

In 2012, he also unsuccessfully ran for Hamilton County Council at-large.

He tried to reclaim his council seat in the 2015 election against incumbent Sue Finkam, but Finkam won with 66 percent of the vote.

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