Archive for Thursday, March 15, 2007

Date looms for general election

March 15, 2007

April 3's general election for Baldwin City Council and Baldwin School Board candidates will be here in no time. Voters and potential voters need to be aware of several upcoming dates.

The most immediate date of note is for voters who aren't registered. In order to vote April 3, voters must register by Monday. Registration can be done at City Hall or at the Douglas County Courthouse.

"Registration closes Monday," said Douglas County Clerk Jamie Shew. "We'll stay open until 7 p.m. that night. Registration forms that are mailed must be post marked March 19."

Advance voting for the election started Wednesday. Voters can go to the courthouse Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to cast advance votes. The courthouse will also be open for voting on Saturday, March 31, from 9 a.m. to noon. For more information, go to the county clerk's election Web site at www.douglascountyelections.com.

Shew said that advance voting continues to gain popularity.

"It continues to increase," he said. "It's become more of a convenience. People can vote whenever they want to. That way if they get tied up on election day, they don't miss voting.

"I enjoy going to the polls, the whole Democratic process in action," said Shew. "But, for a lot of people it's a convenience."

He said in the past November election, 17 percent of the total vote was advance. That was up from 10 percent four years ago. He also said that for the April 3 general election, all polling places will be open, unlike the primary.

"Everyone is voting in their normal place," said Shew. "We did some shifting for the primary, but we're back to the normal locations."

The Baldwin City Chamber of Commerce is also planning an additional candidate forum. Ivan Huntoon, chamber vice president who is in charge of the forum, said it will most likely be March 27 for both council and school board candidates.

"I've yet to hear back from three people," said Huntoon. "It's closer to yes than no. I'm hoping to hear back soon. It will be an open forum participation. I'm hoping to have it at Baldwin Junior High School. Parking at Baker can be a problem."

He said the forum is tentatively scheduled for that date at 7 p.m. The Signal will update the story online and in next week's issue.

City council candidates are incumbents Ted Brecheisen Jr., Nancy Brown and Tony Brown and challengers Jennifer Hayes, Kenny Niehoff and Ken Wagner. There are three openings on the council and voters can choose three candidates.

School board incumbents Alison Bauer, Blaine Cone and Scott Lauridsen are running unopposed. Running for the at-large, position 7 opening are Teresa Arnold and Joshua Mihesuah. Voters can write-in candidates against the incumbents and choose between the pair running for the at-large bid.

The Signal will be running candidate profiles that haven't run yet in the next few weeks. Also, all unpublished candidate profiles are available on the Signal's Web site at www.baldwincity.com in the Election 2007 section, as well as all other information on the election.

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