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RR council sets date for runoff election

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Tax day will again coincide with a runoff election for Rio Rancho voters.

City councilors voted on Wednesday to set Tuesday April 15 as the date for the runoff election that will decide who will be the mayor and councilor representing District 5.

The runoff is required by City Charter because no one received the minimum 50 percent of the votes cast in those four-person races in the regular election on March 4.

The runoff is between the top two vote-getters in each race. In the mayoral contest it will be between Gregg Hull and Mike Williams. In District 5, Thomas Buckner faces Shelby Smith.

Voters can apply for absentee ballots beginning on Monday. Early voting will begin on March 26.

Before voting, councilors discussed a suggestion to choose a date that didn’t coincide with the tax filing deadline. Darlene Collins, who ran unsuccessfully in the District 2 race, made the suggestion during the public comment period.

City Clerk Steve Ruger told councilors the city has traditionally held elections on a Tuesday and switching to a different day might confuse voters. He said a runoff election in 2008 was held on April 15.

The runoff must be held within 35 to 45 days of March 7, the date votes were canvassed from the regular municipal election.

Councilor Chuck Wilkins raised concerns that setting it on Friday April 11 or Wednesday April 16 would make it inconvenient for the canvassing process and for voters who were unable to produce photo ID on election day, which must be done within three days of the election.

 

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