Another Key Deadline Looms Over County General Election Candidates

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Candidates seeking to be on the ballot for the County General Election in August face another critical deadline for filing paperwork next Monday.

The first deadline for candidates was April 1 at noon, when they were required to have filed their qualifying petitions.

The next deadline before them is April 12. By the end of that day they must have filed their 1st Quarter campaign financial disclosure reports.

Failure to do so is a misdemeanor according to Tennessee law, and offenders will be fined a monetary penalty. They will also be excluded from the election ballot, although they would still be able to run as a write-in candidate.

That was just part of the news to come out of Monday night's monthly meeting of the Cannon County Election Commission. In other matters the commission:

• Approved the submission of a budget of $160,101 to the Cannon County Commission for the fiscal year 2010-2011, which begins in July. The election office's budget for the 2009-2010 fiscal year was $135,595.

The increase represents additional funds needed to cover expenses associated with the two elections that will take place during the next fiscal year, one in August and another in November.

The requested budget does not including funding for new voting machines, which will likely be required for elections held in 2012.

• Approved a motion by Commissioner Matt Studd to purchase a water filter and water line heater for the election office. The office has been plagued by issues with dirty, unhealthy water, officials report.

• Discussed the problems uncovered during a recent OHSA inspection of the office. "We are not in compliance with anything," Administrator of Elections Stan Dobson said, "and we have eight weeks to fix all this stuff."

The major problems found during the inspection had to do with the wiring and placement of electrical lines which provide power to equipment in the office such as computers and copy machines. The bathrooms were also found to be a "health hazard" according to Dopson.

• Discussed ongoing issues with security at the office, including the front entrance. Commissioners Sue Patrick and Jackie Gannon said they would contact Cannon County Executive Mike Gannon about having the problems with the door fixed.
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