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Rob Maness 

Advocate Staff Photo by PATRICK DENNIS

St. Tammany Parish candidates running to fill vacancies in House District 77, the Parish Council and the 22nd Judicial District bench began qualifying Wednesday for the Oct. 14 special election. Qualifying ends Friday.

House District 77, which covers western St. Tammany including Covington, Madisonville and Folsom, has been represented by John Schroder, who resigned to run for state treasurer in a special election.

Rob Maness, of Madisonville, who has run for the U.S. Senate twice, qualified along with former Covington City Councilman Mark Wright. Both are Republicans.

A third contender who has announced plans to run for the seat, Ward 1 Justice of the Peace Casey Revere, did not qualify Wednesday.

The District 2 seat on the Parish Council, left vacant by the death in May of Dennis Sharp, drew one candidate on the first day of qualifying: David Fitzgerald, of Covington, a Republican who now holds the seat on an interim basis.

Fitzgerald was named to the seat by the Parish Council from a field of seven applicants. He announced plans to run for the remainder of Sharp's term shortly after his appointment.

District 2 includes part of Covington and areas north and east of the city.

The election of Judge Allison Penzato to the state 1st Circuit Court of Appeal and the retirement of Judge William Burris created two open seats on the 22nd Judicial District bench, and two candidates qualified Wednesday in each race.

Covington attorney Alan Zaunbrecher and Reggie Laurent, a Slidell city prosecutor, are vying for the Division H seat previously held by Penzato. Both are Republicans.

The Division E race also drew two Republican qualifiers, William "Billy" Burris, who is seeking his father's seat, and Jay Adair, an assistant district attorney in 22nd Judicial District Attorney Warren Montgomery's office.

Follow Sara Pagones on Twitter, @spagonesadvocat.