The April 2 municipal election continued to take shape this week with Municipal Court Judge Deborah Mitchell filing for re-election on Thursday.
With less than three weeks left before the Jan. 21 filing deadline, it remains to be seen if there will be a Sedalia School District 200 Board of Education election on the April ballot.
The election will also see races for open seats for city council and mayor, as well as two of the six Pettis County Ambulance District directors.
Municipal Court Judge
Sedalia resident Deb Mitchell filed this week for her 10th term as Sedalia Municipal Court judge.
“I just really like my job,” she said. “I had no idea (when I started) that I would enjoy it this much but over the years it seems to be a good fit.”
First elected in 1996, Mitchell said one of her most proud accomplishments in the past few years was getting the court on the JIS system, allowing those interested to look up cases on Case.net.
“That was part of wanting to keep moving forward and giving the community the best possible court system we can,” Mitchell said. “As part of that, the most recent thing we’ve done was start the process of allowing those who have fines or fees to use credit cards. That was something we’ve been working on for some time and there were concerns about that, mostly of how to make sure it’s fair for everyone, but I really think it’s going to be a positive thing.”
Mitchell said she was looking forward to the election and hopefully sticking around for another two-year term.
“I think I strive, and we all strive, to make sure the system is as fair as it can possibly be,” she said. “I intend to continue that and keep working to make sure we’re complying with the law and doing everything we’re supposed to be doing to make sure we have a good court system.”
Municipal judge candidates must be licensed to practice law in the state of Missouri, be a resident of Pettis County and be between 21- and 75-years-old. Candidates must collect 50 signatures and pay a $50 fee. Filing is open, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday at the Municipal Building. For more information call 827-3000.
So far only two candidates have thrown their hats into the ring for the open mayoral seat: current Sedalia City Councilman Steve Galliher and resident John Fritz.
Galliher previously told the Democrat he wants to keep Sedalia moving forward, focusing on continuing relationships with job-creating companies and encouraging ordinances that improve the city, such as the recent smoking ban and downtown inspection ordinances. Fritz said he intends to increase the lines of communication between City Hall and the public and wants to “put the people’s faith back into their government.”
Those interested in filing for mayor must be at least 30-years-old, a citizen of the U.S. and a resident of the city for at least two years. Mayoral candidates must collect 100 signatures and pay a $100 fee to file.
Sedalia City Council
There are still no challengers for several open Sedalia City Council positions. Ward 2 incumbent Wanda Monsees will run for her third term while current Board of Public Works member Don Meier has been the only person to file for the Ward 3 seat, which will be open when incumbent Wiley Walter steps down after six years on council. Ward 4 has also seen only one person file: incumbent Tollie Rowe, who is running for his second term. Galliher’s now vacant Ward 1 seat has seen no filing as of yet.
City council candidates must be at least 21-years-old, a citizen of the U.S., resident of the city for one year and resident of their ward for six months. Candidates must collect 25 signatures and pay a $50 fee.
Sedalia 200 School District Board of Education
So far three candidates have filed for the Sedalia School District 200 Board of Education, and all three are current members of the board. Vice President Michael Stees, Treasurer Ken Coffelt and member Scott Gardner have filed to remain on the board for another three-year term. So far the race is uncontested, meaning an election may not need to be held, and it has been a few years since an election was needed for the Board of Education.
Candidates must be citizens of the United States and resident taxpayers of the district, who have resided in Missouri for one year preceding their election or appointment, and who are at least 24 years old. Three members will be elected to serve a three-year term April 2. Those interested in filing should stop by the Board of Education Office, 2806 Matthew Dr., by Jan. 21 at 5 p.m. The office is open Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., but will be closed Jan. 20. For more information call 829-6450.
Pettis County Ambulance District
Pettis County Ambulance District 2 Director Mike Layton and PCAD District 5 Director Greg Nehring are both still running uncontested as of Friday afternoon.
To file as a PCAD director, candidates must be over the age of 24, have resided in district for one year, and be a U.S. citizen and a registered voter. For more information call 826-5000.
The last day to file for the April 2 municipal elections is 5 p.m., Jan. 21. Ballots will be certified Jan. 28.