Election deadlines are approaching for upcoming races in Pinal and Maricopa counties and the state government.
It’s important for all voters to watch their mailboxes closely as election season approaches.
“When people receive anything in the mail marked ‘elections,’ that’s important. It’s not a bill, it’s not spam. It’s important voter information to be on the look out for during a busy elections season,” Matt Roberts, director of communications for the Arizona Secretary of State, said during a phone interview March 25.
The city of Apache Junction will not have a city election this year, according to City Clerk Kathy Connelly. Apache Junction is primarily in Pinal County with a small portion in Maricopa County, according to the city’s website.
The borderline is Meridian Road. Anyone living west of Meridian is in Maricopa County while those east of Meridian reside in Pinal County, according to the website.
Gold Canyon is an unincorporated community in Pinal County, according to the county website.
State law requires that the polls be open 6 a.m.-7 p.m. on election day, Ms. Connelly said in an e-mailed response to questions April 9.
Pinal County will be conducting these elections for Pinal County voters, she said.
There will be three polling places in Apache Junction. They are:
Cactus Canyon Junior High School library, 801 W. Southern Ave., precincts 44, 46, 47 and 59; Superstition Mountain Elementary School gymnasium, 550 S. Ironwood Drive, precincts 40, 42, 43, 63 and Maricopa County 23; Four Peaks Elementary School library, 1755 N. Idaho Road, precincts 45, 56, 57 and 58.
Precinct numbers are listed on people’s voter registration card, David Galaviz, a customer service representative for the Pinal County Elections department, said during a phone interview April 10.
Pinal County elections
Pinal County, which contains parts of Apache Junction, all of Gold Canyon, parts of Queen Creek and all of San Tan Valley, will seek to fill multiple positions this fall.
The open seats include the justices of the peace, the court constables and the county clerk, according to a March 20 phone interview with Pinal County Recorder Virginia Ross. All of the positions hold four-year terms, Ms. Ross said.
All eight justice of the peace positions will be voted on this year, Ms. Ross said. That includes the position of Shaun Babeu in the Apache Junction Court, which also serves Queen Creek and San Tan Valley.
The eight justice court constable positions will also be up for election, Ms. Ross said, including the position of Ronald LeDuc with the Apache Junction Court.
A Pinal County clerk will also be chosen this election, Ms. Ross said. That position is currently held by Chad Roche.
It’s unknown at this time who will be running for each position as the deadline for registration is May 28, Ms. Ross said. She added that it’s also unclear which positions will need to be voted on in the general election.
“Some of the races are decided in the primary,” she said.
If candidates receive a certain percentage of the votes in the primary election, they are elected to the position without going through to the general election, Ms. Ross said. She added that the formulas for each position are being reviewed by the legislature.
Pinal County is dealing with an additional challenge this election season, Ms. Ross said: its election warehouse burned down Feb. 4, destroying its election equipment.
“We are working on restoring what we lost in the fire,” Ms. Ross said.
The county is in the process of bidding for new vote-scanning equipment, but Ms. Ross said it’s likely the upcoming election will use ballot boxes rather than the more advanced equipment.
“We don’t want to invest in something where in two years we’ll need something newer,” she said. “Deploying this year wouldn’t be prudent.”
The Pinal County Recorder’s office, 31 N. Pinal St. Building E in Florence, can be reached by calling 520-866-6830. It offers a voter registration line at 520-509-3555. Office hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday.
There also is a satellite office in Apache Junction at 575 N. Idaho Road Suite 800.
Its phone number is 480-983-7038. Its office hours are 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday.
Maricopa County elections
For the 2014 election, Maricopa County voters will elect a county assessor, a District No. 4 supervisor, a clerk of the superior court and 17 justice of the peace and constable positions, according to the Maricopa County Recorder website.
The current Maricopa County assessor is Paul Petersen. He took over the seat in June 2013 after former assessor Keith Russell resigned, Rey Valenzuela, assistant director of elections for Maricopa County, said in a phone interview March 25.
Although the assessor normally serves a four-year term, Mr. Petersen will have to run in 2014 to complete Mr. Russell’s full unexpired term that runs through 2016. Michael K. Jeanes is the current clerk of the superior court, according to the Maricopa County website.
He was first elected in 1998 and reelected in 2002, 2006 and 2010, according to the website.
For more information on Maricopa County elections, visit the Maricopa County Recorder website or call the county voter hotline at 602-506-1511.
The state will elect for numerous positions in 2014, including the four-year offices of governor, secretary of state, attorney general, state treasurer, superintendent of public instruction, state mine inspector and corporation commissioner.
Also up for election are the two-year offices of the state’s nine U.S. representatives, 30 state senators and 60 state representatives, according to the Secretary of State website.
Apache Junction is in Congressional District No. 4, represented by Rep. Paul Gosar. It is in Legislative district No. 16.
An additional deadline for the state election deals with initiatives, referendums and recalls, Mr. Roberts said.
The filing deadline for initiatives, referendums and recalls is July 3, Mr. Roberts said. A total of 21 packets have been taken out by various organizations this year, which can be viewed on the Arizona Secretary of State election page.
“In reality, most of the packets won’t make the ballot,” Mr. Roberts said. “Out of the list, if we had three make the ballot I’d be surprised.”
Initiatives require 172,809 signatures to make the ballot, while constitutional amendments require 259,213, he added.
Once the July 3 deadline has passed, voters will be allowed to submit arguments for or against the ballot measures. The deadline for such arguments is July 9, Mr. Roberts said.
The state is particularly focused on getting independent voters to vote in this election, Mr. Roberts said.
“Historically, less than 10 percent of independent voters participate in the primary. We’d like to see that number increase this year,” he said.
For more information on state elections, visit the Arizona Secretary of State website.