Candidates for local offices need to gather signatures, circulate nominating petitions

Posted 3/15/19

As campaign season gears up, candidates for city offices will soon need to circulate petitions and gather signatures to appear on the ballot. To appear on the ballot in the June 25 primary races for …

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Candidates for local offices need to gather signatures, circulate nominating petitions

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As campaign season gears up, candidates for city offices will soon need to circulate petitions and gather signatures to appear on the ballot.

To appear on the ballot in the June 25 primary races for a city-wide office — mayor or council president — candidates need to gather signatures from five percent of the voters in their party, or 750 signatures, which ever number is lower.

For example, according to the county Board of Elections, there are 6,193 voters in Rome registered as Republicans, meaning that a prospective candidate in the GOP mayoral primary needs at least 310 signatures to appear on the primary ballot.

As there are 5,265 registered Democrats in the city, a Democratic candidate would need 264 signatures for primary ballot access.

Primary candidates have been able to circulate petitions since the end of February and petitions must be filed with the Board between April 1 and April 4.

The requirement for independents running for city-wide office to appear on the Nov. 5 general election ballot differs.

Independent hopefuls need signatures totaling five percent of the of the amount of ballots cast in the latest gubernatorial election. According to the Board of Elections website, voters in the city of Rome cast 9,950 ballots in the 2018 governor’s race, meaning an independent candidate would need at least 498 signatures to appear on the ballot in November.

Independent candidates can begin circulating petitions on April 16, and can file their petitions with the board from May 21 to May 28.

Common Council candidates need signatures from five percent of the number of registered voters in their party living within their ward for their designating petitions. According to the Board of Elections:

The First Ward has 711 Republican voters and 748 Democratic voters. A Republican would need 36 signatures, a Democrat would need 38 signatures.

The Second Ward has 654 Republican voters and 620 Democratic voters. A Republican would need 33 signatures, a Democrat would need 31 signatures.

The Third Ward has 728 Republican voters and 606 Democratic voters. A Republican would need 37 signatures, a Democrat would need 31 signatures.

The Fourth Ward has 599 Republican voters and 710 Democratic voters. A Republican would need 30 signatures, a Democrat would need 36 signatures.

The Fifth Ward has 970 Republican voters and 902 Democratic voters. A Republican would need 49 signatures, a Democrat would need 46 signatures.

The Sixth Ward has 1,412 Republican voters and 829 Democratic voters. A Republican would need 71 signatures, a Democrat would need 42 signatures.

The Seventh Ward has 1,119 Republican voters and 850 Democratic voters. A Republican would need 56 signatures, a Democrat would need 43 signatures.

According to Board of Elections officials, there are a total of 16,415 registered voters in the city of Rome. In addition to 6,193 Republicans and 5,265 Democrats, there are:

409 Conservative Party voters

1,091 Independence Party voters

81 Working Families Party voters

The remaining 3,376 voters are either unaffiliated or are registered with other minor parties.

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