Fairfield Ledger

Mt. Pleasant News   Wash Journal
Neighbors Growing Together | May 21, 2018

Special election set for Aug. 8

Candidates may file until July 14
By Andy Hallman, Ledger news editor | Jun 23, 2017

A special election has been set to fill Curt Hanson’s seat in the Iowa House of Representatives.

On Wednesday, Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds signed a proclamation setting the date of the special election for Aug. 8.

Hanson died June 16. He had been in the Iowa House since 2009, representing the 90th and later the 82nd districts. The 82nd District includes Davis, Van Buren and part of Jefferson counties.

The portion of Jefferson County in the 82nd District includes the city of Fairfield and the following townships: Black Hawk, Cedar, Center, Des Moines, Liberty, Locust Grove, Penn and Polk. The four townships not included are those on the eastern side of the county such as Buchanan, Walnut, Lockridge and Round Prairie.


Filing deadline

Candidates can file papers to run for the seat until 5 p.m. July 14. They can file online at the Iowa Secretary of State’s website at https://sos.iowa.gov. Jefferson County election clerk Abbie DeKleine said the Jefferson County Auditor’s Office will also print nomination papers for those who want them.

The Secretary of State has posted a list of “candidate guidelines” on its website. To run for a seat in the Iowa House of Representatives, a person must:

• Be a citizen at the time of election;

• Have lived in Iowa at least one year;

• Have lived in the district at least 60 days;

• Be 21 years old; and

• Compile 50 signatures from the district supporting one’s nomination.

The latest candidates can withdraw their names for consideration after having filed papers is July 17. Members of the public can check the Secretary of State’s website to see who has filed. Anyone who has an objection to a candidate must file the objection by July 24.

DeKleine said that, because her office has to wait for the objection deadline, she won’t be able to approve a final ballot until July 25, and then won’t receive the ballots for a few days after that. As soon as the ballots arrive, eligible voters can go to the courthouse to vote early.


Early voting

Voters can cast an early ballot during the Jefferson County Courthouse’s normal hours of operation from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. The courthouse will observe extended hours for voting the Saturday before the election, Aug. 5. DeKleine said the courthouse will be open for eight hours, though she’s not sure of the exact times yet.

Polls on election day, Aug. 8, will be open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.

The deadline to request an absentee ballot is Aug. 4, which can be done in the Jefferson County Auditor’s Office. The postmark deadline for absentee ballots is Aug. 7, and the last day the auditor’s office will receive them is Aug. 10.

If a voter has requested an absentee ballot and forgets to mail it by Aug. 7 or decides to vote in person, they must surrender their absentee ballot to election officials when they vote at the polls Aug. 8.


Voter registration

The deadline for voter pre-registration is 5 p.m. July 28. After the pre-registration deadline, voters must follow the rules for election day registration. To do that, one must go to the polling place that corresponds to their current address. The Secretary of State’s website contains tools to help residents find their polling place.

At the polling place, a person must prove their identity and residency. The Secretary of State recommends using a valid Iowa driver’s license with one’s current address printed on it. If a person does not have a driver’s license, other photo IDs are acceptable such as:

• An Iowa non-driver ID card;

• Out-of-state driver’s license or ID card;

• U.S. passport;

• U.S. military ID;

• ID card issued by employer; or

• Student ID issued by Iowa high school or college.

If the photo ID does not contain one’s current address, another document may be used to prove that. Acceptable proofs of residence are:

•Residential lease;

•Utility bill, including a cell phone bill;

•Bank statement;

•Paycheck; or

•Government check or government document

If a person cannot prove who they are and where they live with the documents listed, a registered voter from that person’s precinct. Both the voter and the attester will be required to sign an oath swearing the statements made are true. Falsely attesting or being attested for is registration fraud. It is a class D felony and is punishable by a fine of up to $7,500 and up to five years in prison.

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