The recall election in Benton County was successful in ousting Sheriff Jerry Hatcher.

Now what happens next?

What Is the Replacement Process?

Until the election is certified on August 17, according to Benton County Election officials we talked to, Hatcher will still be in office. We spoke with Auditor Brenda Chilton Wednesday.

Then, an interim replacement is named. They must be an employee of the Benton County Sheriff's Office. This is when it gets complicated.

Once that is done, then the County Republican Party must supply a list of 3 names to the Benton County Commissioners, who will choose one of those to fill the rest of Hatcher's term which expires November 2022.

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According to Benton County election officials, the deadline has passed for being able to hold an election this November for a 'new' Sheriff, so a replacement must be named.

Because Hatcher ran on the Republican ticket, the Benton County GOP will take 'applicants' or will allow citizens to submit their names for potential consideration. This appointment process has actually been used several times over the last ten years for other County offices.

County precinct officers will vote and decide who the final 3 are. Then they go to the Commissioners. IF the 3 commissioners vote to not choose one of those 3 persons, then it goes to the Governor. Yes, if the Commissioners don't like the list, then Gov. Inslee would appoint an interim who would serve until next November.

The Benton County GOP has approximately 60 days to compile the list of 3 potential candidates to be named to fulfill the Sheriff's position, until the election in November 2022.


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