Editorial: Will you consider public office to serve River Falls?Registering to be a local candidate for public office in Wisconsin couldn’t be more poorly timed. The filing period starts just after Thanksgiving and ends just after New Year’s.
Registering to be a local candidate for public office in Wisconsin couldn’t be more poorly timed. The filing period starts just after Thanksgiving and ends just after New Year’s.
Hmmm. Naturally, you expect most people to have a few other things on their mind during that month-long stretch.
But, like it or not, Thursday, Dec. 1, through Tuesday, Jan. 3, is when city council, school and county boards, and some town board seats are open for anyone to declare their candidacies.
The spring election is April 3. If three or more candidates register for the same office, a primary will be held Feb. 21.
Here’s a look at the local election scene:
n City Council openings for seats now held by Mayor Don Richards, At-large council member David Cronk, At-large council member Scott Morrissette and District 4 council member Bob Hughes. Council members serve two-year terms.
Mayoral and at-large council candidates must collect a minimum of 200 supporting signatures. District 4 candidates need a minimum of 20 signatures. These and nomination papers must be turned in by no later than 5 p.m., Jan. 3.
City Council candidacy papers can be picked up at City Hall, 222 Lewis St. For questions, call City Clerk LuAnn Hecht at 715-426-3408 or email her at email@example.com.
--School board openings for seats now held by Alan Tuchtenhagen, Barbara Kolpin and Mike Miller. School board members serve three-year terms.
Unlike city council candidates, school board candidates don’t have to collect supporting signatures. Candidates must live in the River Falls School District and are elected from the district at large.
Candidacy papers can be picked up weekdays at the school district’s central office, 852 E. Division St., between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., or downloaded from the school district’s website at www.rfsd.k12.wi.us
One of the forms has to be notarized. This can be done by Administrative Assistant Darlene MacBride at the central office. School board candidates must officially file by 5 p.m., Jan. 3. Keep in mind the district’s central office is closed from Dec. 23 until reopening Monday, Jan. 2.
For the town boards:
--Kinnickinnic, which has a primary system, has openings for seats held by Supervisor #3 Bill Gnatzig and Supervisor #4 John Humphrey. Pick up nomination papers at the Town Hall, 1271 County Road J or call Town Clerk Lola Higgins at 715-821-0382. Papers need to be back to the clerk by 5 p.m., Jan 3.
--River Falls, which will set a Tuesday evening caucus date in mid-January, has seats held by Supervisor #3 Tom Sitz and Supervisor #4 Brad Mogen up for re-election. Town residents who attend the January caucus will vote on candidates to run in the spring election.
--Troy, which also has a primary system, has openings for seats held by Supervisor #2 Brian Schwab and Supervisor #4 Jason Kjos. Pick up nomination papers at the Town Hall, 654 Glover Road or call Town Clerk/Treasurer Sharon Provos. She can be reached at 715-425-2665. Town Hall hours are 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday.
--As for county boards, River Falls area residents will vote for the Pierce County positions now held by LeRoy Peterson, Jon Aubart, Ben Plunkett, Paul Barkla and Cullen Peterson, and the St. Croix County seats now held by Lorin Sather, Buzz Marzolf and Steve Hermsen.
The deadline for turning in the signatures — at least 20 and no more than 100 — in both counties is 5 p.m., Jan. 3. A candidate must collect all 20 signatures from the district in which he is running.
Prospective candidates must register their candidacy and return their completed nomination papers to the respective county clerk.
In St. Croix County, the clerk’s office is at the Government Center, 1101 Carmichael Road, Hudson. In Pierce County, the clerk’s office in the Courthouse, 414 W. Main St., Ellsworth.
The Journal’s online poll question this week asked: In December the school board will decide whether to add a 4-year-old kindergarten program using local childcare providers. Most Wisconsin school districts have some type of classes for 4-year-olds. Should River Falls?
Early results show: NO, 54.2%. YES, 45.8%.
To vote, go to www.riverfallsjournal.com.