MONTICELLO, Ind. — A central Indiana county councilman will replace a Republican state senator who resigned to join a law firm in Washington, D.C.

Republican precinct committee members voted Thursday night in Monticello (mahn-tuh-SEL’-oh) to select Boone County Councilman Brian Buchanan for the District 7 Senate seat. He’ll fill the vacancy left by then-Senate majority leader Brandt Hershman, whose Dec. 22 resignation has left the district without a senator for the first four weeks of this year’s legislative session.

Buchanan was picked after five rounds of voting, winning the last vote 42-41 over Frankfort assistant fire chief Ed Cripe. Buchanan works for a trucking company owned by his family. His Senate term runs until the 2020 election.

The Senate district sprawls across six counties from near Indianapolis northwest to the Lafayette area.