UG vacancy candidates narrowed to two

The Unified Government Board of Commissioners on Thursday narrowed the field of candidates to fill a vacancy on the panel to two.

Of 18 candidates, the commission selected Donald E. Budd Jr. and former Commissioner Nathaniel Barnes as finalists. Applicant Mark S. Gilstrap had withdrawn his name.

The commission intended to vote Thursday to fill the at-large District 1 vacancy created when Mark Holland was elected mayor of the Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kan. But an initial miscount of the votes indicated the finalists were Budd and Melissa A. Bynum. When the error was discovered Barnes had already left the meeting, said Unified Government spokesman Edwin Birch.

The commissioners now tentatively plan to make a final selection on June 20.