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Candidate filing period wraps up

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Noon today

By Greg Summers

Gregory A. Summers

gsummers@thelancasternews.com

The filing period for the 2014 General Election year ends at noon today, March 30, for candidates filing  in Lancaster County for several offices.

“If anybody out there wants to get in at the last minute, they can,” said Lancaster County Director of Elections Mary Ann Hudson. 

Candidates who want to file for the S.C. House of Representatives, Lancaster County Council and Lancaster County Probate Judge must do so at the county voter registration office in the lower level of Lancaster County Administration Building, 101 N. Main St. The office is open from 8 a.m. until noon, today, March 30.

Candidates for federal offices, statewide offices and multi-county offices such as judicial circuit solicitors, must file with the South Carolina State Elections Commission.

“The only thing I can say for sure is if they want to file to run and walk in at 12 noon, they are going to be in trouble,” Hudson said. “By law, that’s when it has to end.” 

This year, local candidate filing has a different schedule due to the calendar. The traditional open filing date – March 16 – fell on a Sunday, just like the traditional end of filing is noon today.

Since candidates started filing in Lancaster County on Monday, March 17 instead of March 16, the local county voter registration office was open Saturday, March 29, to assure the same number of days.

Other filing changes for 2014 involved where candidates filed.

In the past, candidates filed with their respective political parties, However, this year, they filed with the county voter registration office.

That change was made because of what happened in 2012 after the S.C. Supreme Court removed 180 candidates from state ballots. 

Because the candidates didn’t submit written economic statements of interests and statements of candidacy at the same time, they couldn’t seek office, the court ruled. 

Some of the candidates had filed part of the paperwork online or at separate times.

The rule change was made to assure all required paperwork was properly filed at the same time.      

Hudson said she is unsure if there will be a last minute rush to file today.

“Based on my experience, it seems that most candidates prefer to file early,” she said. “But at the same time, it’s sorta hard to figure. This is the first time we have actually handled the filing.”

Party primaries are set for June 10. 

 

Contact copy editor Greg Summers at (803) 283-1156