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Filing day arrives for local candidates


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Candidates for mayor and the Roswell City Council will lay their cards on the table today during filing day for the March 6 municipal elections.

The election clock is ticking in City Clerk Sharon Coll’s office as she is supervising the municipal election process. Candidates must declare their campaigns today at City Hall from 8 to 5 p.m., including the lunch hour.

Announced candidates

Five City Council seats and the mayor’s office are up for election.

Mayor Dennis Kintigh will be running for another term as mayor. Former Mayor Del Jurney and Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell student Sergio S. Gonzalez have also announced their candidacies for mayor.

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City Councilor Natasha Mackey announced her candidacy for mayor instead of running for re-election to her Ward 1 seat.

Newcomers Jacob Roebuck and Jeffrey Cabana in early December announced their intentions to run for Mackey’s seat in Ward 1.

In November, City Councilor Caleb Grant announced his bid for re-election to Ward 2. He has no known opposition, although today’s declarations will decide who’s on the ballot in each race.

For Ward 3, incumbent Art Sandoval will be running opposed by Richard Garcia and Judy Stubbs.

Ward 4 City Councilor Jason Perry will be stepping down on Jan. 11 due to moving to a new home outside of his ward. Perry has said he will not run for an office in March’s municipal elections.

Ward 5 incumbent Tabitha Denny announced her intentions for another term in mid-December.

Declaration of candidacy 

Candidates must file a declaration and a certified copy of their voters’ registration must be dated after Dec. 5, due to the election resolution adopted during the special City Council meeting on that date.

Coll said the candidates must turn in their declaration of candidacy, a certified copy of their voters’ registration from the county clerk, and an itemized listing of all contributions received on behalf of the candidate’s campaign within the preceding 45 days, which is Nov. 25.

Coll said the candidates will also turn in information about who their campaign treasurer is.

On Wednesday until 5 p.m., the city clerk shall certify each candidate as a qualified voter and verify the addresses to see if the candidates are currently living in their respective wards, according to state statute.

On Thursday at 5:01 p.m., the drawing for placement on the ballot will be decided on a first-come, first-serve basis, based on the time candidates file on filing day.

“That time is important for the candidate because they want to be able to draw first,” Coll said. “Sometimes they don’t care. Sometimes they want to draw last. So if we have several candidates coming in for one ward, like we do for mayor and Ward 3, then that time will tell me who gets to draw first, second, third, fourth, and so on. We try to make it as impartial and fair as possible.”

Important dates

On the city website, individuals can obtain an absentee voting application and the ballots can be sent out on Jan. 30, which is the first day of absentee voting. Absentee voting will close at 5 p.m. on Feb. 6 and at this time the county clerk will also close voter registration. Absentee ballots must be mailed by March 2.

Coll said if an individual needs to register to vote, change their name or address, they must do it by Feb. 6. The individual can go online to Secretary of State, in person at the Chaves County Clerk’s office, or go to City Hall.

For other important dates, Feb. 14 is when early voting begins. Early voting ends March 2.

Early voters can vote at City Hall between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, with the exception of Feb. 19, which is Presidents’ Day.

Roswell’s municipal Election Day is March 6, when polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Pecos Valley Transit will be offering free bus rides to the closest stop near voting convenience centers on Election Day. The voter just has to tell the driver that they are going to vote and the driver will keep track of those who utilize this service.

Voters can go to any of several voting convenience centers on Election Day at the Roswell Museum and Art Center, St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, West Country Club Church of Christ, Waymaker Church, the Chaves County Clerk’s Office, and the Union building at the Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell campus.

Coll said the first City Council meeting after the election will be held March 15 due to the process of the votes being canvassed on March 9. The new city councilors will be sworn in on March 12.

“Elections are very important,” Coll said. “It is a time for the voters to be able to have their say — to know their vote does count and it does matter. Get out and vote.”

City reporter Alison Penn can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 205, or at reporter04@rdrnews.com.

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