Court case to decide 2019 Centralia mayoral race again continued

MARION COUNTY — With the consolidated election quickly approaching, a Friday hearing in the Marion County case set to decide the outcome of the 2019 Centralia mayoral race has again been continued.

In July, attorneys for Mayor-Elect Bryan Kuder sought summary judgment in their client’s favor but the case has been continued multiple times without action being taken.

Brian Kuder

Kuder was elected in April 2019 by a majority of voters to serve as Centralia Mayor.

But his victory was vacated by the Centralia City Council after then-city manager Dan Ramey brought information to the City Council claiming Kuder was ineligible to serve as he did not live within the city limits.

Despite Kuder providing proof of living in an apartment within the city limits, the city council chose to vacate Kuder’s election and later appointed Herb Williams to serve as mayor.

In May 2019, Kuder filed a suit in Marion County Court seeking a judgment declaring him the duly elected and qualified Mayor of Centralia.

Summary judgment in the case would have placed Kuder in the Mayor’s seat just months before the consolidated election scheduled to fill the remaining two years in what would have been his first term in office.

Instead, Kuder is again seeking election to the mayor’s seat in that election and is running against Williams for the unexpired term. With no new date scheduled for the next hearing in the case, it’s possible the April election could be held before a resolution is reached on the previous race.

Friday’s hearing was continued due to one of Kuder’s attorneys, Nicole Villani still recovering from injuries she suffered in a car crash last month.