The 2018 race for a Baldwin County state Senate seat officially got underway Thursday as County Commission Chairman Chris Elliott announced he was running for the post.

In a lengthy Facebook post, Elliott said, “As a Baldwin County Commissioner, I have built coalitions to substantially increase the efficiency of your county government saving taxpayers 10’s of millions of dollars each year and reducing substantially the overall county employee headcount all while increasing spending on road and drainage projects to address our critical infrastructure needs. We have brought new high paying jobs to Baldwin County with even more prospects in the future so that we may diversify our economy. We have enacted new planning, zoning and subdivision regulations that help to protect our quality of life and our environment while being respectful of private property rights. I have rekindled positive working relationships with our school officials, mayors and city councils that allow us to address our growth challenges together. It is time to take these proven principles of government efficiency and a cooperative spirit that have been so successful in Baldwin County to the State Senate.”

Senate District 32 is being vacated by Sen.Trip Pittman, a strong supporter of term limits. His first reaction was, “I thought Tucker Dorsey was running for it,” referring to another county commissioner.

Elliott is president and owner of The Elliott Companies Inc. which owns and operates ServiceMaster Restore franchises in Mobile and Baldwin counties, providing multidisciplinary disaster mitigation, catastrophe restoration and construction services.

Elliott is a graduate of St. Paul’s Episcopal School in Mobile and of the University of Richmond in Virginia, where he received a B.A. in Political Science and Urban Policy. He lists a number political positions held in county Republican party politics,

While serving on the county commission, Elliott was pulled over by Fairhope police in 2016 for driving through a flashing red light. He then was arrested on drunken driving charges. His case will be nolle prossed next year if he stays out of trouble.

Pittman said he is not supporting a candidate to replace him at this time. He said he hopes to see a large number of candidates with new ideas enter the race.

The Republican primary will be held June 30, 2018.