City Council candidates can pick up petitions

Attention, future City Council members. Now’s the time to start thinking about a run for one of the three Grand Junction City Council spots that will head to voters in April.

Registered voters who have lived in the city limits for at least the past year and are interested in running for the City Council can pick up petition packets at City Hall starting Jan. 4. Those packets, along with signatures of at least 50 other registered voters, must be submitted to the city by Jan. 24.

Open positions include ones to be vacated by Gregg Palmer for District C, which includes the eastern edge of the city to Pear Park, and an at-large seat now occupied by Bruce Hill. Palmer and Hill are term-limited.

The District B seat, which represents the city’s northwest area, currently held by Sam Susuras, is up for re-election. Susuras was appointed to the seat by a vote of the City Council after former Council member Linda Romer Todd vacated the seat.

Susuras has announced publicly he will run for election for his current seat, and he has filed an affidavit required to collect campaign contributions.

“I have had a lot of inquiries,” Grand Junction City Clerk Stephanie Tuin said of interest in the open seats.

Tuin said she recommends people visit the website for the Colorado Municipal League, http://www.cml.org, to get a feel for the duties of being an elected, local leader.

“They are basically policy makers especially in our form of government,” Tuin said of City Council members.

In addition to attending and voting at regularly scheduled meetings, City Council members in Grand Junction may be appointed to serve on any of the city’s more than 20 volunteer boards. City Council members also may be tasked with serving on noncity boards or commissions. City Council members are compensated $500 a month and the mayor receives $750 a month.

Candidates who announce in public their intention to run for a City Council position and collect campaign funds must submit an affidavit to the city within 10 days, Tuin said.

Interest by candidates running for City Council seats varies by elections and often “depends on what’s going on in the community,” Tuin said. Usually the at-large council position is the most sought because more candidates qualify to fill that role. In years past, it’s not uncommon to have up to five candidates on the ballot for one open seat, she said.

For more information about running for City Council, contact Grand Junction’s City Clerk’s Office at 244-1511.


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