Marc Ensign of Paradise joins special election race

Marc Ensign of Paradise has joined the special election race to replace former Cache County Executive Craig Buttars.

CACHE COUNTY – Marc K. Ensign has joined the local race to replace outgoing Cache County Executive Craig Buttars.

On Thursday, Ensign filed his application to participate in the upcoming special election being held among the Cache County Republican Party to fill that now-vacant post in the county government.

“I believe that we need a new skillset to deal with the more diverse challenges knocking on our door,” Ensign says. “It’s time for bold, fresh leadership at the county seat and executive management has been my life’s work.”

After providing public service as a member of business, industry, community and non-profit boards, Ensign now emphasizes that he hopes to bring private-sector discipline, determination, accountability and solutions to the county’s business affairs.

The special election is slated for Saturday, Jan. 30 to allow the Republican Party’s local leaders and precinct officials to select a replacement for Buttars, who has been nominated by Gov. Spencer Cox to serve as commissioner of the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food.

Ensign is a graduate of Bigham Young University and a resident of Paradise. He is the former owner of Ensign Toyota-Honda in Logan.

In 2020, Ensign campaigned to fill the South District seat on the Cache County Council that was being vacated by Jon White. Ensign’s candidacy for the county council seat was supported by state Rep. Casey Snider and county council chairman Karl Ward. He won a plurality of votes from local Republican Party members during their April 2020 nominating convention, but was bested by Nolan Gunnell of Wellsville in balloting during the GOP primary on June 30.

Ensign now lists his priority issues as local growth, economic development, increased employment opportunities and property tax relief.

The upcoming special election will take place during a GOP County Central Committee meeting at the Cache County Event Center, with usual coronavirus precautions in effect. That gathering will be open only to members of the County Central Committee (precinct chairs, vice-chairs, secretaries and treasurers) and county delegates.

Under state law, local GOP leaders will select a nominee to serve out the remainder of Buttars’ unexpired term as county executive and forward that name to the Cache County Council for approval.

Cache GOP chairman Chris Booth said that the party organization began accepting filing affidavits from prospective candidates to replace Buttars on Tuesday and the filing period will close Friday, Jan. 15.

Under state law, a candidate for a county elected position must be a registered voter and a local resident for one year.

In the case of the upcoming GOP special election for the county executive position, all would-be candidates must be registered Republicans.

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