CategoryLocal

Chicago early voting Super Site closes due to extreme temperatures

Due to extreme cold, the Loop Super Site for early voting in Chicago’s 2019 municipal elections at 175 W. Washington St. was closed on Wednesday. When the site would reopen was unclear.
 
Representatives at the Board of Election Commissioners told Ballotpedia that voters could vote between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Wednesday, January 30, at 69 W. Washington St. on the 6th floor.
 
If the Loop Super Site is not open Thursday, the 69 W. Washington St. location will once again be open until 5 p.m.
 
Early voting for Chicago’s February 26 municipal elections, scheduled to begin January 17, had been delayed due to outstanding petition challenges. The Loop Super Site first opened on Tuesday, January 29, for 8 hours of early voting before the polar vortex swept in.
 
Once the Loop Super Site reopens, it’s scheduled to be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sundays through February 25, with extended hours the week before the election. Early voting locations open in all wards on February 11.
 
Voters can also choose to vote by mail; the deadline to apply to vote by mail is February 21. Mail-in ballots must be postmarked by February 26, which is Election Day.
 
Elections for a new mayor, all 50 city council seats, city treasurer, and city clerk are taking place. For all offices on the ballot, runoff elections will be held on April 2 for races in which no candidate receives more than 50 percent of the vote. All offices are nonpartisan and are for four-year terms.
 
See the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners website for more details.


Applications accepted for vacant Reno City Council seat until Friday

On February 1, a week-long application period will close for an open seat on the Reno City Council in Nevada. The vacancy is the only regular at-large seat on the council, which has seven positions. The other six positions are held by the mayor, who is also elected at-large, and five members who are elected by ward. The city council will hold a special public meeting on February 15 to select the new member.
 
David Bobzien held the at-large council position before his resignation. He was first appointed to the council in 2014 and then elected to a full term in 2016. Bobzien resigned after Gov. Steve Sisolak (D) appointed him to serve as the director of the Governor’s Office of Energy.
 
Reno held elections for mayor and both the Ward 2 and Ward 4 city council seats on November 6, 2018. The other four city council seats were last elected in 2016. The council’s appointee to fill the at-large vacancy will serve until the seat is up for election next in 2020.
 
A special election was considered to fill the vacancy, but the council voted 5-1 in favor of using an appointment process. The council member who voted in favor of the special election, Ward 1 member Jenny Brekhus, said she wanted voters to make the decision. The cost of a special election was estimated at a maximum of $175,000, and it would not have been held until three to four months in the future, according to the Reno Gazette Journal.
 
Reno is the third-largest city in Nevada and the 89th-largest city in the U.S. by population. The other three largest Nevada cities—Las Vegas, Henderson, and North Las Vegas—are holding elections in 2019. The primaries are on April 2, and the general elections are scheduled for June 11. City council seats are on the ballot in all three cities, along with the mayor’s office in Las Vegas.


Seven candidates qualify to run in Orange County special election

In California, seven candidates are running in the nonpartisan special election for the vacant District 3 seat on the Orange County Board of Supervisors. The candidate filing deadline passed on January 28, and the election is scheduled for March 12.
 
The vacancy was created when former District 3 representative Todd Spitzer was sworn into office as the county’s new district attorney. He was elected to the new position on November 6, 2018. Spitzer had held the District 3 seat since 2012.
 
Among the candidates running for the seat are three current or former officeholders: Irvine Mayor Don Wagner, former Anaheim City Council member Kris Murray, and former U.S. Representative Loretta Sanchez. Sanchez served in the U.S. House from 1997 to 2017; in 2016, she ran unsuccessfully in the Democratic primary against Kamala Harris for the U.S. Senate seat vacated by Barbara Boxer.
 
Wagner, Murray, and Sanchez are joined on the ballot by Katherine Daigle, Larry Bales, Kim-Thy “Katie” Hoang Bayliss, and Deborah Pauly.


Early voting in Chicago begins January 29: Final ballot numbers

Early voting in Chicago’s municipal elections kicks off on January 29 at the Super Loop Site (175 W. Washington St.). The originally-scheduled start date of January 17 was delayed due to several outstanding petition challenges.
 
A total of 160 city council candidates will be on the ballot—down from 212 who filed to run in November. Thirty-five candidates were removed due to successful petition challenges and 17 withdrew.
 
Of the 21 who filed to run for mayor, 14 candidates will appear on the ballot. Six candidates were removed by the election board, and one candidate withdrew from the race.
 
The board removed two candidates from the city clerk race, leaving only incumbent Anna Valencia’s name on the ballot for that race. The three candidates in the treasurer race overcame signature challenges.
 
Chicago municipal elections will take place on February 26 with runoffs on April 2 for all races in which no candidate receives a majority of the vote in February. Chicago is the third-largest city in the U.S. by population.


Filing deadline passed for Atlanta special election

The filing deadline for the District 3 city council special election in Atlanta passed on January 25 at 4:30 p.m. The general election is on March 19, and a runoff election will be held on April 16 if no candidate receives a majority of the votes. Ten candidates filed to run.
 
The election was called after Ivory Lee Young Jr. died in November 2018 while in office. He was first elected in 2001 and most recently re-elected in 2017 with 67 percent of the vote. The winner of the special election will serve the remainder of Young’s four-year term, which ends in 2021. To qualify, candidates had to live in District 3 and either pay a qualifying fee of $1,809 or file a qualifying petition and Pauper’s Affidavit.
 
Atlanta held city elections in 2017 for mayor, city council president, all 15 seats on the city council, and 10 city judges. Atlanta is the largest city in Georgia and the 39th-largest city in the U.S. by population.


No incumbents file in St. Louis school board race

A total of six candidates filed to run for two at-large seats on the St. Louis Public Schools Board of Education in Missouri. The general election is on April 2, and the filing deadline passed on January 15. Both seats are open since neither incumbent chose to file for re-election. Former incumbent Bill Haas lost his re-election bid on November 6, 2018, and has filed to run again in 2019.
 
In St. Louis Public Schools, even-year elections are held on the statewide general election date in November, while odd-year elections are held on the first Tuesday of April. In 2018, seven candidates filed to run for two seats, including both of the incumbents. In 2017, seven candidates filed to run for three seats, including two incumbents.
 
A 2007 decision made by the Missouri state government stripped the elected St. Louis school board of its power and the district of its accreditation. The district earned its accreditation back in January 2017, but the board still does not have control of the district as of the 2019 election. Oversight of the district instead rests with an appointed three-member Special Administrative Board, although the school board continues to hold elections for its seats.
 
St. Louis Public Schools is the largest school district in Missouri in 2019. The district served 28,960 students during the 2015-2016 school year. This year, Ballotpedia is covering 29 school board seats up for election across 11 school districts in Missouri.


Early voting begins in Nashville special election

On January 23, early voting began in the special election for the Nashville Metro Council’s District 29 seat. The election is on February 12, 2019. Four candidates filed to run for the vacancy: Nicola Lamattina, Delishia Porterfield, Constance Smith-Burwell, and Vicky Tataryn.
 
The District 29 seat was previously held by Karen Johnson, who was elected as the new Davidson County Register of Deeds on August 2, 2018. Although the metro council is officially nonpartisan, Johnson is affiliated with the Democratic Party.
 
The winner of the special election will complete the remainder of Johnson’s term, which ends in August 2019. In August, Nashville is holding general nonpartisan elections for mayor and all 41 metro council seats. The filing deadline for the general election is May 16, 2019.
 
Nashville is the second-largest city in Tennessee and the 24th-largest city in the U.S. by population.


Colorado Springs filing deadline passes

The filing deadline to run for office in Colorado Springs passed on January 22, 2019. The city is holding elections for mayor and three of nine seats on the city council on April 2, with a possible runoff scheduled for May 21. The six other seats on the city council, elected to specific districts, will be on the ballot in 2021.
 
Mayor John Suthers is running for re-election against three challengers: Lawrence Martinez, Juliette Parker, and John Pitchford. Martinez ran against Suthers in 2015, when Suthers was first elected to the position. Although the election and office are officially nonpartisan, Suthers is affiliated with the Republican Party.
 
Two of the three at-large city council members are running for re-election: Bill Murray and Tom Strand. Council member Merv Bennett, serving his second term, cannot seek re-election due to term limits. Five other candidates filed for office, Tony Gioia, Gordon Klingenschmitt, Terry Martinez, Val Snider, and Wayne Williams. Three challengers have previously held office. Klingenschmitt was the District 15 state representative from 2015 to 2017. Snider was an at-large Colorado Springs City Council member from 2011 to 2015, when he chose not to seek re-election, and Williams served as Colorado Secretary of State from 2014 to 2019; he lost the November 2018 general election.
 
Colorado Springs is the second-largest city in Colorado and the 40th-largest city in the U.S. by population.


Orange County special election filing deadline is January 28

A nonpartisan special election to fill the vacant District 3 seat on the Orange County Board of Supervisors in California is being held March 12. The candidate filing deadline is January 28.
 
The vacancy occurred after the former District 3 representative, Todd Spitzer, was sworn into office as the county’s new district attorney. He was elected to the new position on November 6, 2018. Spitzer had held the District 3 seat since 2012.
 
Four days before the filing deadline, nine candidates had announced their intentions to run in the special election, including two city officials in the district—Irvine Mayor Don Wagner and Anaheim City Council member Kris Murray—and one former member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Loretta Sanchez. Sanchez served in the U.S. House from 1997 to 2017; in 2016, she ran unsuccessfully in the Democratic primary against Kamala Harris for the U.S. Senate seat vacated by Barbara Boxer.


Former U.S. Senator, NHL team owner endorse in Tampa Bay mayoral race

On Tuesday, former U.S. Sen. and Florida governor Bob Graham (D) endorsed city council member Mike Suarez for Tampa Bay mayor. In a statement, Graham said, “His leadership on the environment, our efforts to fight the war on terrorism and his dedication to protecting our elders, is what I admire about his service.” Suarez has also been endorsed by two local first responders unions.
 
Wednesday, Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik endorsed Jane Castor in the race. In a statement, Vinik said, “I know as our next Mayor, Jane will continue to strengthen our economy and make Tampa an even better place to live and work.”
 
Seven candidates are running to replace outgoing Mayor Bob Buckhorn (D), who is term-limited and was first elected in 2011. David Straz has raised the most of the candidates so far, $1.6 million, with Castor and Ed Turanchik next at about $220,000 each. Castor topped two summer 2018 polls produced by the group St. Pete Polls, averaging 44 percent with 18 percent of voters still unsure. Straz polled second in those polls with 10 percent support.
 
Tampa is the second-largest city in Florida and the 52nd-largest city by population in the United States. Twenty-six of the 100 largest cities by population will be holding mayoral elections in 2019. Five (Chicago, Houston, Philadelphia, San Antonio, and Dallas) are among the 10 largest cities.
 
Democrats hold the mayor’s office in 18 of the cities with elections this year. Republicans and independents hold four each.


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