UPDATE: W.Va. secretary of state releases updated election deadlines
UPDATE: 4/2/20 12:50 P.M.
West Virginia Secretary of State Mac Warner on Thursday released a list of updated dates and deadlines relating to the state’s rescheduled Primary Election.
Gov. Jim Justice on Wednesday moved the election from May 12 to June 9 because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The updated dates and deadlines are as follows:
- Through June 3: Eligible voters may apply for a Primary Election absentee ballot
- April 24: County clerks to begin mailing absentee ballots to voters who have submitted absentee applications to county clerks
- May 14 – 20: Sample ballots published in local newspapers throughout the state (publication dates will vary by county)
- May 19: voter registration deadline
- May 27 – June 6: early voting in-person period
- June 2 – 8: Official list of candidates or sample ballot published in local newspapers throughout the state (publication dates will vary by county)
- June 3: Deadline to submit absentee-by-mail application (must be received by county clerk on this date)
- June 8: Deadline to hand-deliver absentee ballot to county clerk’s office
- June 9: Deadline to mail absentee ballot to county clerk (must be postmarked by this date)
- June 9: Primary Election Day (in-person voting locations may differ from regular polling location during COVID-19 pandemic; contact county clerk for more information)
- June 10: Absentee ballots mailed without a postmark accepted (absentee ballots without a postmark cannot be counted if received by county clerk after this date)
- June 15: Start of canvass (absentee ballots postmarked by Election Day will be accepted if received by the start of canvass)
All registered voters will receive an application to request an absentee ballot for the June 9 Primary Election from their county clerk by mail in early-to-mid April. Absentee request forms can also be printed from GoVoteWV.com or obtained by requesting a form from your county clerk by email, phone, fax or in person.
In an effort to ensure access to a ballot while keeping voters, election workers, and the public safe during the Primary Election, Secretary Warner recommends that voters use the absentee ballot process to vote.
Information regarding the upcoming election, including how to register to vote and vote absentee, can be found by clicking on the related link to the right of this article or by calling 304-558-6000.
All day Monday, people planning to run in the May primary election for West Virginia offices have been coming to the Secretary of State's office in Charleston, and to courthouses across the state, to file "certificates of announcement".
Beyond the first moments the Wood County Courthouse was open Monday, the first day of filing was fairly quiet.
But we do know there will be a primary race between an incumbent and a challenger, for the one county commission seat up this year.
Commissioner Bob Tebay is being challenged by fellow Republican and former Parkersburg councilman Roger Brown. Tebay and Brown were also candidates for the office in 2014, when Tebay won the seat in November.
Sheriff Steve Stephens, Prosecutor Pat Lefebure and the county's four current magistrates also filed for re-election Monday.
In all, 10 Wood County offices will be listed on the May 12 primary ballot.
"Prosecuting attorney, assessor, sheriff, one county commission seat-district C-two board of education seats are available this time," says County Clerk Mark Rhodes, "conservation district supervisor and all four of the magistrate positions are on the ballot this time for the county offices."
Among statewide filings of note, Republican candidates Mike Folk and Woody Thrasher filed to run for governor. They are expected to be challenged by Governor Jim Justice.
And Democrat Richard Ojeda filed to run for the U.S. Senate seat now held by Republican Shelley Moore Capito. Ojeda, a former state senator and candidate for the U.S. House, briefly made a run for president in 2019.
Republican Tom Joyce filed to run for re-election as mayor of Parkersburg. Two Democrats, both former city council members, Nancy Wilcox and Sherry Dugan, also filed to run for mayor.
The latest filings are at the Wood County government website, which you can find by going to the "Hot Button" on our home page.
The 2020 election year in West Virginia officially gets under way in January.
Candidates can file to run for office from January 13-25.
In addition to the presidential race, elections are being held for just about every state and local office this year.
Locally, voters will be electing mayors and city councils in Parkersburg, and Wood County offices, including one of the three seats on the county commission and two county board of education members.
"We have had a couple of pre-candidacy filings for county commission," Wood County Clerk Mark Rhodes told us Friday. "I know the city of Parkersburg has had a couple of pre-candidacy filings for mayor. City offices such as city council and mayor file with their respective municipalities and clerks."
Those pre-candidacy filings took place during 2019.
This year's Wood County elections will be the first for new voting machines the county purchased in 2018, replacing systems that had been in use nearly 15 years.
The West Virginia primary takes place May 12.