New Philadelphia, Ohio - Tuscarawas County election officials are planning for a lite primary election.

Tuscarawas County Board of Elections Director Sarah Kneuss says quite a few precincts won’t have anything on the ballot for the May 7th election, but she says that’s not unusual for a primary election during an odd-numbered year.

“It’s never a countywide unless there’s a county or state issue that’s on the ballot, so we knew this election that not all of our precincts will be open, and that will be the case. Only part of the county will be open,” she says. 

Dover, Garaway and Indian Valley schools all filed petitions to place tax issues on the primary ballot along with Perry and Warwick townships and the Union Cemetery District. Dover and Garaway are both asking voters for additional funds to cover their emergency requirements, while the two townships, the cemetery district and Indian Valley are seeking renewals. 

On the candidate side, five mayors are up for re-election this November, but only two of them are being challenged in the primary. 

Two Democrats are looking to unseat their former opponents in the Twin Cities mayors races. Uhrichsville Council President Mark Haney is seeking a rematch against incumbent Rick Dorland, while Tim Still is hoping to reclaim the Dennison mayor’s office from Jeff Dryden. 

The Republican mayors of Dover, New Philadelphia and Newcomerstown are all running unopposed at this point, but Kneuss says that could still change before November. Independents have until the day before the primary to file for the general election, and there’s also still a chance for write-in candidates to get on the ballot. 

“Write-ins for the primary will be coming up here towards the end of the month, that deadline, and then for the fall, it’s the end of August,” Kneuss says.

Kneuss says the board of elections still has to meet to determine if the candidates who have filed so far qualify to appear on the ballot.

“They have to be filled out properly according to the Ohio Revised Code, and then all of the signers on the petition, the signatures have to match and they have to be registered at the address they claim they’re living at," she explains.

That will happen during certification on February 19th. 

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