Picerno drops House bid, submits name for vacant Moore commission seat

PINEHURST — Former Moore County Commissioner Nick Picerno said in an email to supporters he was submitting his name to the Moore County Republican Executive Committee to fill the vacant term of Louis Gregory, who recently announced his intent to resign in February.

In life, things change, that’s a given. In the past couple of weeks since announcing my intention to run for NC House District 78, several events have taken place that significantly effect that decision,” said Picerno.

He cited the ongoing litigation over the state’s new district lines, saying that the court battle has caused chaos and confusion for those seeking to serve.

Picerno also said that he did not wish to oppose Neal Jackson in the Republican primary for the seat.

According to multiple North State Journal sources, the House District 78 boundaries are being reworked by the General Assembly after a divided state supreme court voided the current district maps. Picerno did not cite a change in the maps in his statement but the district’s makeup could bring other candidates to the race which already includes three announced Republican candidates. The maps could also include other incumbents since Rep. Allen McNeill, who lives in Randolph County, has announced his retirement. The General Assembly includes incumbency in its map drawing criteria. The maps struck down by the courts were drawn to prevent McNeill from be “double bunked” – drawn into a district with another incumbent. That consideration would not be necessary for a new map since District 78 is now considered an open seat for 2022.

“My long time friend Louis Gregory has decided to retire from the Moore County Board of Commissioners effective February 16th. 3 others on the board have announced they will not seek re-election. These events have prompted me to submit my name to the Moore County Republican Executive Committee as a candidate to replace Mr. Gregory on the board of Commissioners,” said Picerno.

Picerno previously served two terms on the Moore County Commission.

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