The Valdez Star - Serving Prince William Sound and Copper River Basin

By Lee Revis
Editor, Valdez Star 

May Day! Clerk's office is already preparing for May 1 municipal elections

Terms for mayor, school board and the city council are up for grabs this season


January 31, 2018

Election season is opening in Valdez – and hopefuls looking to run for mayor, city council or school board can get an early start.

"I will begin accepting petitions for office beginning on February 15," said Sheri Pierce, city clerk for Valdez.

The municipal elections will take place May 1.

Candidates for city council, school board and mayor must collect and then submit completed petitions to the city clerk's office in person to be have their name certified and on the ballot for this year's election.

The nominating petitions must have the signatures of 25 qualified voters in order for a candidate's name to be accepted for the ballot. Candidates running for mayor must submit a petition with 50 signatures.

"Final date for filing a nominating petition will be March 15, 2018 at 5:00 p.m.," says the notice published in the week's edition of the Valdez Star.

Candidates must also be registered to vote within the Valdez city limits, and have been a full-time resident for at least one year according to the clerk's office.

The mayor's seat – currently held by Ruth Knight – is up for election, as are two three-year terms for city council, and one two-year council term, for a total of three council seats.

Council members Nate Smith, Chris Moulton and Dennis Fleming have terms that are expiring in 2018. All three are eligible to file for reelection, as is Knight.

There are also two three-year terms opening on the board of education.

Long-time board members Kathy Todd and Dolores Gard currently hold the seats that are up for election this year.

While running for public office is not everyone's cup of tea, voting in the upcoming elections is an essential right, and it is a good time to either register to vote or make sure your current registration is up-to-date and valid.

Voters must be properly registered no later than 30 days prior to the upcoming election.

Anyone with questions regarding their registration can consult the city clerk's office at city hall or the Legislative Information Office (LIO) located inside the state building on Meals Ave.

The Division of Elections website also has a data base voters can consult if they are unsure of their registration status.

Information on absentee voting and other important deadlines will be published in the newspaper and on the city's website as deadline approach for the election.

Statewide elections will occur later in the year.

"The next primary election will be held on August 21, 2018," the state's Division of Elections says on its website. "The polls will be open from 7:00 a.m. through 8:00 p.m."

The general election will be November 6.

The office of governor is open this year, as are seats for legislature.


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