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Fayette County businessman Fike announces bid for state Senate seat

| Friday, March 14, 2014, 12:01 a.m.
Harry Fike, candidate for the Democratic nomination for the 32nd District of the state Senate.

A Fayette County businessman has announced he will seek the Democratic nomination in the spring primary to succeed state Sen. Richard Kasunic.

Kasunic, 67, of Dunbar Township is retiring after representing the 32nd District for more than three decades.

Harry Fike, 68, of South Union said he will be a “citizen soldier” as opposed to what he refers to as a “permanent political pay roller.”

Fike pledged to protect the area's coal industry from overzealous regulation and to relieve homeowners “from oppressive property taxes.”

He said he would work to fund infrastructure improvements, which will encourage new business development.

In the 1980s, Fike served as an elected director on the Laurel Highlands school board, along with two terms as the controller for Fayette County.

Fike returned to private life after leaving the controller's office.

He has operated Penn State Auto Sales, a used auto dealership in Uniontown, since the 1960s.

He has served as a member and chairman of the Fayette County Housing Authority and the county's redevelopment authority.

Under redistricting, the 32nd District covers all of Fayette and Somerset counties and a portion of southeastern Westmoreland County.

Kasunic, who has held the seat since 1994, recently announced he will not seek re-election. The primary is May 20.

In addition to Fike, Democrats filing petitions to seek the party nomination include state Rep. Deberah Kula of Fayette City, and Rosemary Ambrosino of Uniontown.

Republican candidate Pat Stefano of Bullskin faces no opposition in the primary. He operates Stefano Printing in Dunbar.

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