Elections loom … signs bloom
April 7, 2012
With the primary election just two months away, Carson City residents can expect to start seeing campaign signs sprouting up along roadways and in yards.
The primary is June 12, the earliest in state history. Early voting starts Saturday, May 26.
Carson City Clerk-Recorder Alan Glover said sample ballots will go out in the near future, but there are so few primary contests this cycle, it won’t be a booklet. An 8- by 14-inch piece of paper folded in three will handle all the races.
Several rules regulate political signs, including the state law barring them from public rights of way. Signs posted in state rights of way along roads and highways will be summarily removed by NDOT crews, Glover said.
“They don’t even tell you,” he said. “They just take them down.”
Signs posted along the National Highway System face additional restrictions. Candidates can find out about those rules from NDOT.
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In addition, political signs can’t resemble official traffic signs or block views of oncoming traffic. They aren’t supposed to district drivers, but Glover acknowledged that that’s exactly what the signs are supposed to do.
He said candidates need permission from private property owners to put signs on their land.
Finally, he said, candidates who lose their primary bid have, by state law, 30 days to take down all their signs. Winners can leave theirs up until the November general election if they wish.
Early voting will be held at Glover’s office in the courthouse beginning May 26 and ending Friday, June 8. He said early voting has gotten steadily more popular in the capital. In the last election cycle, he said, 52 percent of those who voted did so during early voting.
There will, of course, be primaries for U.S. Senate, where six Democrats including Shelley Berkley and five Republicans including Dean Heller are running. Minor party candidates are nominated by the party and don’t have primaries.
In Congressional District 2, Republican incumbent Mark Amodei has no opposition, but there are five Democrats running.
While there are several uncontested legislative races statewide, Carson Republican Pete Livermore has a primary opponent, Phillip Davies.
Regent Ron Knecht has three opponents, and there are five running for the state Board of Education including two current board members pitted against each other by the legislative changes in the board’s structure, Dave Cook and Adriana Fralick.
In Carson City races, the Wards 2 and 4 supervisor races both have primaries. There is no incumbent in Ward 2, where Shelley Aldean decided not to seek another term.
Ward 4 incumbent Molly Walt has two opponents.
The other races on the June primary ballot in the capital are unopposed incumbents. Under a change by lawmakers, the unopposed candidates no longer go to the general election ballot. Since they need just one vote to claim the office, they are now on the primary ballot.
In Carson this cycle, that includes Mayor Bob Crowelll – the first time a mayor has been unopposed in recent memory – Justice of the Peace John Tatro and school board member Steve Reynolds.