While the first election in 2014 is months away, DeKalb County Administrator of Elections Dennis Stanley said potential candidates have already begun to ask questions about various offices.
“We have had people already ask what they need to do to become a candidate,” Stanley said. “Even though it is a little bit early, certain issues could come into play now, depending on the circumstances.”
It is likely a primary election will be called by one of the local political parties for May 6, 2014. As a result, the qualifying deadline for all candidates will be Noon February 20th. Petitions will be available November 22, 2013.
“Since petitions are not available until November 22, 2013, potential candidates may wonder how they can declare or announce they are running before November,” Stanley said. “Individuals may be announced candidates and may begin soliciting campaign funds at any time before the election. That is a political strategy issue and each candidate must make that decision.”
“However, before a candidate raises or spends money, the candidate needs to file an “Appointment of Political Treasurer” with the Election Commission. This form is available at http://www.tennessee.gov/tref/forms/ss-1120.pdf or can be obtained at our office. You can print it out online and bring it to us. We must have the original, so a fax or email will not work.”
”You may file the Appointment of Political Treasurer at any time, but it must be filed before you raise or spend money,” Stanley continued. “The Registry of Election Finance has said that “incidental” expenses while you are thinking about running do not count. There are different regulations for judicial candidates, so please ask us before soliciting campaign funds.”
Once a candidate files an Appointment of Treasurer form, the candidate is required to file periodic disclosure reports. The reports are to be filed quarterly during the election year and semi-annually in either the year(s) before or after. Additionally, a report is due 10 days before any election. The report dates can be found at http://www.tennessee.gov/tref/cand/cand_filing.htm or you can obtain a copy at the local election office.
“The State Registry of Election Financial (615-741-7959) or http://www.tennessee.gov/tref/contact.htm has jurisdiction over election financial issues,” Stanley said. “The DeKalb County Election Commission merely files the reports and makes them available to the public. The state office can answer any question you have about financial reports or requirements.”
More information about the petition process, including additional deadlines for Road Superintendent and Sheriff candidates, can be obtained at the election commission office on the first floor of the DeKalb County Courthouse or by logging on to www.dekalbelections.com.