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The North Carolina House of Representatives District 27 will see a race between Republican challenger Wes Tripp and incumbent Democratic Representative Michael Wray.

Both candidates filed for the office Tuesday.

Tripp is the current sheriff of Halifax County and announced his intention to run for the seat in November of last year.

Wray, who filed at the Northampton County Board of Elections office to run for his tenth term, issued a statement on filing to retain his seat.

“It has been a tremendous honor serving the people of Halifax and Northampton County. As a result of redistricting, I look forward to the opportunity to represent the citizens of Warren County once again. Now more than ever, we need leaders in Raleigh that will stand up for the people in District 27,” he said. 

(For a rundown of filings on the first day of the period Monday visit this link)

Wray was elected to the state House in 2004 and “quickly emerged as a leader, rising to leadership positions including Deputy Minority Leader and Minority Whip and chairing several House Committees,” the statement said.

He currently serves as chair of the House Finance and Ethics Committees, vice chair of the Agriculture Committee, and as a member of the Energy and Public Utilities; Health; and Rules, Calendar and Operations of the House committees. 

Wray is also a member of the Joint Legislative Commission on Governmental Operations and Joint Legislative Oversight Committee on Medicaid and NC Health Choice. 

Wray also played a role in crafting the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic as a member of the House Select Committee for Covid-19’s Economic Support Workgroup. Wray was also a member of the House Conference Committee for 2021-2022 budget.

“In this year’s budget, we were able to secure over $42 million in state funding for water and sewer infrastructure, flood mitigation, community revitalization, historic preservation, tourism development, education, and economic development in Northampton and Halifax counties,” said Wray. “These funds will make a tremendous difference in many of our communities.

“I will continue to push for education, new jobs, and improving the health and quality-of-life of the citizens of District 27. I look forward to being a strong voice for the people of Halifax, Northampton, and Warren Counties.” 

Wray is a lifelong resident of Northampton County and owns several small businesses in Northampton and Halifax counties. He and his wife Kay, a schoolteacher, have twin sons Matthew and Phillip. 

Halifax County superior court judge race

There will also be a contested race for the North Carolina superior court judge seat for District 6A between Brenda Branch, who is currently the chief district court judge for Judicial District 6 and Norlan Graves, who was recently appointed to the position by Governor Roy Cooper following the retirement of Alma Hinton.

Northampton County

In Northampton County Richie Harding filed for the District 5 board of commissioners seat  currently held by Kelvin Edwards while Catherine B. Moody filed to run against incumbent Lucy Edwards.