(left) Bath Democrats on Tuesday chose City Council Vice Chairman Sean Paulhus as the Democratic nominee for the April 2 special election to fill the House District 52 seat vacated by former Rep. Jennifer DeChant.; (right) Retired U.S. Navy Captain Kenneth Sener, the Republican candidate for the April 2 House District 52 special election, stands with Demitroula Kouzounas, chairwoman of the Maine Repubican Party. Credit: Contributed Images

Bath voters will choose between their city council vice chairman and a retired U.S. Navy captain on April 2 when they vote in a special election to fill the District 52 House of Representatives seat vacated last month by four-term legislator Jennifer DeChant.

In February, Bath Democrats chose City Council Vice Chairman Sean Paulhus as their candidate. Paulhus, who grew up in Bath and has worked in both the Senate and the House as an aide to the secretary of the Senate as well as as sergeant at arms, was elected by the party caucus 54-39 over City Council Chairwoman Mari Eosco.

Retired U.S. Navy Capt. Kenneth Sener was nominated by the city’s Republican party at their caucus on Feb. 19, Francis Walker, chairman of the Bath Republicans, said.

Sener holds an MBA from the University of Texas, according to Walker.

Non-party candidates were required to submit the signatures of at least 50 registered voters in the district by Feb. 22, and write-in candidates were required to declare candidacy by March 1. But none did.

Christopher Hallowell, who initiated a bid for the seat as a Libertarian, did not return signatures prior to the Feb. 22 deadline, according to Kristen Muszynski at the secretary of state’s office. Muszynski said only Paulhus and Sener returned the required signatures.

DeChant, a Democrat, resigned on Feb. 1 to take a job in the private sector.