Lynn Posey | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Lynn Posey

Lynn Posey Photo courtesy Public Service Commission

Lynn Posey Photo courtesy Public Service Commission

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Lynn Posey said Tuesday that he won't seek a third term as the central district member of the Mississippi Public Service Commission.

Posey, of Union Church, was elected to the three-person utility regulation board in 2007 and 2011. He served 20 years in the state Senate, chairing the Wildlife Committee 16 years. He switched from Democrat to Republican in December 2010.

"My family and I are grateful to the people of the central district for allowing me to serve them," Posey, 59, said in a news release. "It has certainly been an honor and privilege to represent the good people of the district."

Mississippi voters in 2015 will elect eight statewide officials and district posts such as the PSC and the Transportation Commission, plus all 122 seats in the state House and all 52 in the state Senate. Candidates' qualifying deadline is Feb. 27.

Democratic state Rep. Cecil Brown of Jackson said several weeks ago that he running for the central district PSC seat.

Brown was the state's chief fiscal officer under Democratic Gov. Ray Mabus, who served one term that ended in 1992. He has served in the state House since 2000 in a district that is entirely in Hinds County. He is a former Education Committee chairman and was among the top budget writers when Democrat Billy McCoy was speaker of the House from 2004 to 2012. However, Brown has not held a chairmanship since Republicans gained the House majority in early 2012.

Two Republicans said Tuesday that they are considering running for the central district PSC seat, now that Posey is out of the race. Former state Sen. Lee Yancey of Brandon, who works as an investment adviser and Baptist pastor, told The Associated Press that people have approached him about entering the race and he is thinking about it. Jason Cochran of Flowood, a utility construction company project manager and son of former central district public service commissioner Nielsen Cochran, told The Clarion-Ledger he might run for the PSC or a legislative seat.

Meanwhile, Democrat Brandon Presley says he's seeking a third term on the Mississippi Public Service Commission.

The 37-year-old says people from across the political spectrum encouraged him to run for governor or other offices in 2015. But he says he wants to serve another four years as the northern district member of the utility regulation board.

Presley was elected to the three-person PSC in 2007 and 2011. He was mayor of Nettleton from 2001 to 2007.

Candidates' qualifying deadline to run for state office in Mississippi is Feb. 27.

Voters in 2015 will choose eight statewide officials, including a governor. They will also choose northern, central and southern district members of the public service and transportation commissions. And they'll fill all 174 legislative seats.

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