The District 7 Urban County Council race is the race that apparently won't happen.
One of the two candidates to succeed KC Crosbie, who decided not to seek re-election, has been disqualified because his candidacy petition did not contain 100 valid signatures, the minimum needed to run for office.
That leaves Jennifer Scutchfield, 39, as the only candidate in November, barring a write-in campaign by another district resident.
Jason Scott Rainey was disqualified last week after a legal audit of his petition. He hasn't ruled out a write-in campaign but sounded doubtful Wednesday night.
Never miss a local story.
Rainey, 30, a real estate appraiser in his first run for public office, said he had submitted a petition to the Fayette County clerk's office with 103 signatures from voters in his district.
"Basically, the day after the filing deadline, my opponent contacted me and let me know she had an issue with the signatures I had collected," Rainey said. "She said if I didn't withdraw, she was going to take me to circuit court. ..."
"It's unfortunate the way this happened."
Scutchfield, 39, a development officer for the Girl Scouts, said she was just going by the rules.
She asked the clerk's office to verify the signatures on Rainey's petition. "The clerk verified 99 registered voters. Obviously that was below the hundred needed.
"I'm a lawyer by training. I'm a by-the-rules kind of person," said Scutchfield, who collected 217 signatures on her petition.
Eliminating a candidate for not having the requisite number of signatures happens "every now and then," said Tracy Merriman, elections department manager in the county clerk's office. "It's not the most unheard-of thing. It just doesn't happen very often.
"We recommend getting 125 to 150 signatures to be safe," in case signatures have to be struck for any reason, she said.
The clerk's office checks signatures only when asked by an opponent or an eligible voter, Merriman said. Otherwise, the office takes all filing papers "on their face."
Signatures are verified by comparing each name and address on a petition against Fayette County's voter registration list. "People often ask us to do this, and we do provide that service for a fee," Merriman said. The charge is 25 cents a name.
The same thing happened to one of Crosbie's opponents when she first ran for council six years ago. "When I reviewed the signatures, clearly to my naked eye you could see somebody had signed for multiple people," she said.
Crosbie went to Fayette Circuit Court and had her opponent's petition thrown out. "It's happened to other candidates. I don't think it's unique to this district," she said.
In 2006, District 4 council member Julian Beard was nearly thrown off the November ballot because of a legal challenge over the validity of his candidacy petition. But a judge ruled that Beard's opponent, Bill Roberts, acted in "bad faith" in trying to get Beard kicked out of the race.
Both names were on the ballot. Beard won the race.