City election has contested seats for mayor and city court judge

By 
Kathleen Gilluly
Thursday, June 10, 2021
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Laurel’s municipal election is heating up with several races contested. In both the mayoral race and the city court judge race the incumbents will be facing off with challengers.

Mayor Tom Nelson currently faces two current council member who are vying for his job. Council Vice President Bruce McGee who represents Ward 2 and Councilman Scot Stokes who represents Ward 3 have both filed to run for mayor. McGee’s term as councilman ends this term on Dec. 31, 2021, while Stokes was re-elected in the last election.

Incumbent City Court Judge Jean Kerr will be running against Juliane Lore, currently the city’s criminal prosecuting attorney.

To date no candidates have filed to run in Ward 2 for the open council seat. Incumbent Heidi Sparks is running for reelection in Ward 1. Irv Wilke is running for re-election in Ward 3 and Richard Klose is running for re-election in Ward 4

The last day to file for office is June 21. Candidates pay a 1% filing fee to be on the ballot. For Laurel candidates that equates to $274 to run for mayor, as the mayor’s salary is $27,846, and $56 for city council. To run for judge the filing fee is $431, based on a salary of $43,105.92.

While everyone registered to vote in Laurel chooses the mayor and judge, councilors are elected by voters in the ward in which they live.

Folks who haven’t made up their minds to run in time to be on the ballot, can still file a Declaration of Intent to run (as a write-in candidate) in the primary if they file by July 12, or by Aug. 30, for the general election on Nov. 2. The primary election will be held Sept. 14.

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