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What is a judge-executive?

In preparation for the upcoming election and to continue the series of exploring what the titles and duties of our local government officials mean, let’s examine the office of the judge-executive, the highest local political position a person can occupy.

A judge-executive oversees an entire county and is given the power to perform all of the duties inherent in the role — this means performing duties of both an executive and administrative capacity.

A judge-executive’s powers are very dense and detailed. Their duties include providing the execution of all resolutions and ordinances of the fiscal court, as well as all contracts entered into by the fiscal court. They also provide execution of all the laws by the state enforced by him/her or the police officers that fall under his supervision.

The judge-executive also provides the fiscal court with the information regarding the county’s various boards, departments and commissions so that the court can operate as it is intended to. Every elected or appointed official and every board, district or commission that uses county funds must report to the fiscal court and the judge-executive on the state of their office. The judge-executive must also prepare an annual budget for the fiscal court as well as keep the court abreast of the financial situation of the county. With approval of the fiscal court, the judge-executive has the authority to remove and appoint county employees and personnel.

With all of these duties and more, the seat of the judge-executive is one of strict responsibility to make sure they are serving their community to the best of their abilities.

Candidates for Harlan County Judge-Executive include incumbent Dan Mosley who is unopposed in the Democrat primary. Darla Carter Heflin and Clair Stines are seeking the Republican nomination.

Information for this article found at http://www.lrc.ky.gov/statutes/statute.aspx?id=23770.