The Petition Deadline was 4:00 p.m. Thursday, July 15 and the petition was filed just moments before. So now, according to County Auditor Ben Steines, is the process moving forward to fill the Winneshiek County Supervisor’s vacancy.
The petition will be available for review by the public until July 20th. Any member of the public may file an objection to the validity of the petition. The petition must contain the signatures of at least 242 Eligible Electors (someone who meets the qualification to vote, even if they aren’t registered) from Supervisor District 2. Each signature must also be followed by a street address and date of signature. The Auditor’s Office is instructed to accept the petition on face value, so if it appears to have the requisite number of signatures with addresses and dates, it will be accepted. The objection process is available to the public for in depth review.
The committee of County Officers (Auditor, Recorder, and Treasurer) will meet on July 20th to “order” the election to be held, if no objection is filed. The earliest date to hold the election is August 24th. If the committee orders the election held on that date, then the following timeline of events will proceed. If an objection is filed or the committee orders the election on a different date, the following timeline will need to be updated to reflect that change.
There will be two ways for a candidate to get their name on the ballot:
1. Interested individuals can collect 33 signatures of District 2 Eligible Electors on a Nominating Petition and sign an Affidavit of Candidacy. This process will be used for candidates who wish to run unaffiliated with a political party or affiliated with a non-party political organization (like Green Party or Libertarian Party.) These petitions and affidavits will be due in the Auditor’s Office by July 30th.
2. The two Official Parties (Democratic and Republican) can reconvene the County Convention to name an individual as their candidate to the ballot. These candidates do not need to collect signatures. Certificates of Nomination at the Convention will be due in the Auditor’s Office by July 30th.
Once the list of candidates is official, the County Auditor will submit the election and candidate information to the election programming and ballot printing company. Once ballots are available, absentee balloting will begin, through the mail and in-person. New Iowa law as it applies to this is: earliest possible date to start absentee balloting is August 4th (if the ballots are ready) and the last day to request a ballot by mail is August 9th. In-person absentee voting will continue in the Auditor’s Office through Monday, August 23rd. Absentee ballots that were mailed out must be returned by the close of polls on Election Day to be counted.
Election Day, August 24th, poll will be open from 7:00am – 8:00pm. All voters will vote at the Courthouse 1st floor.
The Board of Supervisors will canvass the results at Noon on August 30th.
If Gary Rustad wins, his term will continue through December 31st, 2022. If another candidate wins, they will be sworn in before the following Board of Supervisors meeting and serve in that seat until December 31st, 2022. This seat will be on the Primary Election ballot in June 2022 and General Election ballot in November 2022.