By LEE REVIS
Editor, Valdez Star 

Three candidates to vie for mayor's seat in upcoming elections

List of candidates expands in race for city council and board of education

 

March 21, 2018



The final list of candidates vying for mayor, city council and school board was finalized last week for the next municipal elections.

Council members Jim Shirrell and Darren Reese will compete against each other and newcomer Jeremy O’Neil for a chance at becoming the next mayor of Valdez.

The current mayor, Ruth Knight, elected to not run for a second term.

All three men returned completed petitions with the signatures of 50 qualified Valdez voters to the city clerk’s office before last Thursday’s deadline.

In order for a candidate’s name to appear on the ballot for the May 1 municipal elections, hopeful’s for mayor, school board and council were required to take out petitions and gather signatures from voters and return the completed petitions to the city clerk before the close of business March 15.

Petitions to run for council and school board required only 25 signatures.

The sitting council members running for mayor will be required to resign their council seats if they win the election. Shirrell’s council seat does not expire until 2019. Reese’s term serves until 2020.

In the race to fill two three-year terms on the board of education, three candidates successfully completed the process. Incumbents Kathy Todd and Dolores Gard will both appear on the ballot, as will newcomer Joe Lally.

There is one two-year city council seat up for election, and the incumbent, Chris Moulton, will face-off for the term against Sherikay Griffith.

The most crowded race is for two three-year terms on city council.

Incumbent Dennis Fleming is running to hold on to the seat he currently holds, and will face off against several newcomers Derek Morris, James Devens, Ron Ruff, Sue Ellen Montes and Bob Engebretson.

Council member Nate Smith, who is serving out a third term, is not running to retain his seat.

There are no ballot propositions on this year’s municipal ballot.

Sample ballots with the names of the candidate and the seat and length of the term will be available next month.

The deadline to register to vote in the May 1 elections is rapidly approaching. If you are not already registered to vote in Valdez, you must register no less than 30 days before the election.

If you wish to vote but are unable to go to the polls on election day, there are four ways a person can vote absentee in Valdez according to the clerk’s office.

Mail, fax, proxy and in person at city hall.

“The request for an absentee ballot by mail must be made on a City of Valdez provided form, which includes your Valdez address, the address to which the ballot is to be sent, and your signature,” the clerk’s office says on its website. “It is advisable to apply for your absentee by mail ballot at least 4 weeks prior to the election to ensure the voted ballot reaches the City Clerk’s office before May 1, 2018.”


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Voting by fax or email also requires voters to also contact the clerk’s office for special instructions.

“Voting by email or fax is conducted by the City Clerk’s office during regular business hours beginning Monday, April 16, 2018 through the close of polls on elections day,” the office says.

Delegating another person to vote for you is available in certain circumstances. A qualified elector unable to go to the polls due to age, serious illness, or disability may either request an absentee ballot by mail, or apply for an absentee ballot through a personal representative.


Absentee voting in person begins next month according to the clerk’s office. The polls will be open Monday through Friday during regular business hours at city hall beginning Monday, April 16.

 

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