• 52°

Candidates file for local offices

By Staff
Municipal elections set for this autumn
By MIKE VOSS
Contributing Editor
Some candidates for area municipal elections showed up early to file on Friday, but they were forced to wait until noon, when the filing period began.
The filing period ends at noon July 20. Election Day is Nov. 6.
Kellie Harris Hopkins, elections director for Beaufort County, said about five candidates showed up at the Beaufort County Board of Elections office before noon. They were politely informed to return at noon or after. Washington Mayor Judy Meier Jennette and Belhaven Mayor Adam O’Neal were among those who arrived early.
O’Neal, in his first term as mayor, returned shortly after noon to file so he can seek re-election. Accompanying him were J. Nelson Guy and Mac Pigott, with each man filing to run for the two east-end seats on the Belhaven Town Council.
One west-end seat on the council is up for grabs this election. Robert Stanley is seeking that seat.
Councilman Charles O. Boyette, a former Belhaven mayor, is seeking to unseat O’Neal and reclaim the mayor’s post, which he lost to O’Neal two years ago. Boyette turned in his filing documents to the town clerk in Belhaven. They will be mailed to the Board of Elections. Boyette’s filing is not official until the board receives the documents, Hopkins said.
Jennette, in her first term as mayor, also returned shortly after noon to file documents so she can seek re-election.
In Washington, candidates will compete for the five seats on the council. Councilman Mickey Gahagan filed to seek re-election.
In Aurora, candidates will compete for two seats on the four-person Board of Commissioners.
In Bath, the mayor’s post and the four seats on the Board of Commissioners are open to candidates.
This year, Bath voters will elect two commissioners who will serve two-year terms and two commissioners will serve four-year terms. When the two-year terms of commissioners elected this year are up, those terms on the Bath Board of Commissioners become four-year terms. That will result in commissioners serving staggered terms.
In Chocowinity, candidates will run for two seats on the four-member Board of Commissioners.
In Pantego, the mayor’s post and the five seats on the Board of Commissioners are open to candidates.
In Washington Park, candidates will compete for the five seats on the Board of Commissioners or the mayor’s seat.
In Washington County, one lone candidate showed up at the Board of Elections office.
Brian Roth filed the necessary papers that will enable the incumbent mayor to seek re-election.
A telephone call to the Martin County Board of Elections just before 5 p.m. Friday was not answered.
In Beaufort, Martin and Washington counties, Oct. 12 is the deadline to register to vote in the general elections. In those counties, one-stop voting begins Oct. 18 and concludes at 1 p.m. Nov. 3. Absentee voting by mail begins Oct. 5.
Hyde County has no municipal elections.
In Washington County, Roper voters follow a different election schedule than voters in Plymouth or Creswell.
Election Day in Roper is Oct. 9. A run-off election, if needed, would be held Nov. 6.
People must be registered by Sept. 14 to vote in the Oct. 9 election. Absentee voting by mail begins Sept. 7 and concludes at 1 p.m. Oct. 6.
One-stop, no-excuse voting begins Sept. 20 and ends at 1 p.m. the last Saturday (Oct. 6) before the election.
Several rules apply to primaries or elections, no matter when conducted.
The last day to request an absentee ballot is one week before any primary or election. The request must be received by a county’s board of elections by 5 p.m. on the Tuesday before the primary or election. Absentee ballots must be returned to a county’s board of elections by 5 p.m. on the day before a primary or election. Absentee ballots must be delivered by mail, commercial courier service or in person.
Boards of elections canvass ballots seven days after a primary or election.