File for local elected office from May 17 to 31

Published 10:22 am Tuesday, May 17, 2016

The 2016 elections are one step closer.

The filing period for people interested in running for public offices opened Tuesday and runs through May 31.

Seats with more than two candidates will be up at the Aug. 9 primary election to whittle the candidates to two for the Nov. 8 general election.

City Council

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To be eligible for a city council position, candidates must be 21, an Austin resident (living in the geographical boundary of the office) and a registered voter of the city of Austin. An affidavit of candidacy form and filing fee of $25 must be submitted to the Austin City Clerk’s office by 5 p.m. on May 31.

Forms can be picked up at the city clerk’s office at city hall. After the affidavit is filled out, candidates will be given a packet with information about candidates, ward maps and other materials.

Four council members and the mayor’s positions have come to the end of their four-year terms in 2016: Mayor Tom Stiehm and Council members Michael Jordal 1st Ward, Steve King, 2nd Ward, and Jeremy Carolan, 3rd Ward.

On the Austin Utilities Board, three members’ terms are at the end: Tom Baudler, Tyler Hulsebus — who is taking over on July 1 for Jim Schroeder — and Tom Sherman.

Forms for the Austin Utilities Board positions can also be picked up at the city clerk’s office.

Austin Utilities General Manager Mark Nibaur said he would welcome any questions people might have about the positions and what the board does as far as the governance of overall operations.

County seats

For Mower County offices, District 2 Commissioner Polly Glynn and District 1 Commissioner Tim Gabrielson are both up for reelection. Both plan to run again.

People can sign up to challenge them at the Mower County Auditor-Treasurer’s office in the Mower County Government Center, 201 First St. NE.

Candidates can also file for three seats on the Mower Soil & Water Conservation District’s board of supervisors, who serve four-year terms. Filings would also be turned into the Mower County Auditor-Treasurer’s office.

Supervisor posts up for election include District 1 (Udolpho, Waltham, Sargeant, Red Rock and Dexter townships); District 2 (Pleasant Valley, Racine, Grand Meadow and Frankford townships); and District 5 (Lansing and Austin townships, including the city of Austin).

Mower SWCD’s current supervisors in those seats are Jim Gebhardt (District 1); Rick Gehling (District 2); and Jon Erichson (District 5).

The auditor-treasurer’s office can be reached at 507-437-9456.

It costs $50 to file for a county board seat, and it costs $20 to file for an SWCD seat.

State offices

The District 27A and District 27B House of Representatives seats and the District 27 Senate are all up for election.

In District 27B, Republican Dennis Schminke is challenging incumbent Rep. Jeanne Poppe, DFL-Austin.

Gary Schindler, DFL-Albert Lea, is seeking the 27A seat against District 27B Rep. Peggy Bennett, R-Albert Lea.

No challengers have yet announced plans to challenge District 27 Sen. Dan Sparks, DFL-Austin.

People filing for these offices may file with the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State or the county auditor in which the candidate resides.

Candidates can find information about filing for office, along with information on campaign finance, filing a campaign committee and fair campaign practices at in the “Election Administration & Campaigns” section.

School board

The school board opted out of the primary election system. Their filing period is from Aug. 2 to Aug. 16 and all candidates will be on the Nov. 8 ballot.