Article 8. Elections
Article 8. Elections
§1-801 Falls City Code §1-816
Article 8. Elections
§1-801 ELECTIONS, GENERALLY. The Municipal primary and general election shall be held in accordance with the provisions of Chapter thirty-two (32) Revised Statutes of Nebraska. Said elections shall be held in conjunction with the State Primary and General Election. Prior to February One (1) of the year in which the first (1st) such joint election takes place, the Governing Body shall receive the consent in writing of the County Board to so hold the election and such authorization shall be prescribed according to state law. The County Clerk shall have charge of the election and shall have the authority to deputize the Municipal Clerk for Municipal election purposes.
Commencing with the Statewide Primary Election in 1976, and every two (2) years thereafter, those candidates for Mayor and for positions on the City Council whose terms will be expiring shall be nominated at the Statewide Primary Election and elected at the Statewide General Election. Charges shall be paid to the County Clerk as set forth in section 32-4,147 RS Neb. (Ref. 17-107.02(1), 32-4, 147, 32-505 RS Neb.)
§1-802 ELECTIONS; TERM OF OFFICE. All elected officers of the Municipality shall serve a term of four (4) years. (Ref. 17-107.02 (2) RS Neb.)
§1-803 ELECTIONS; PRIMARY ELECTION NUMBER OF CANDIDATES FILING. If the number of candidates properly filed for nomination at the primary election does not exceed two (2) for each vacancy to be filled, all candidates properly filed shall be considered nominated, and no primary election for their nomination shall be required. (Ref. 17-107.02(3) RS Neb.)
§1-804 ELECTIONS; TIE VOTES. In the case of a tie vote of any of the candidates in either the primary or general election, the County Clerk shall notify such candidates to appear at his office on a given day and hour to determine the same by lot before the canvassing board, and the certificate of nomination or election shall be given accordingly. Notice to appear shall be given by certified mail. (Ref. 17-107.02(5) RS Neb.) (Ord. No. 940, 12/5/77)
§1-805 ELECTIONS; GENERAL ELECTION; PREPARATION OF BALLOT. When more than one person becomes a candidate by filing, petition, or write-in procedures for the same position in the primary, the County Clerk, in preparing the official ballot for the general election shall place thereon the names of the persons who received the greatest number of votes in the primary, but in no event shall the names on the general election ballot be more than twice the number of vacancies to be filled at the general election.
The County Clerk shall place the names of the candidates on the general election ballot in the direct order according to the number of votes received at the primary election. If no primary election was held, the name of the candidates shall be placed upon the general election ballot in the order of their filing. (Ref. 17-107.02(6)&(7) RS Neb.)
§1-806 ELECTIONS; FILING FEE. Prior to the filing of any nomination papers, there shall be paid to the Municipal Treasurer a filing fee which shall amount to one percent (1%) of the annual salary for the office for which the candidate will file; Provided, there shall be no filing fee for any candidate filing for an office in which a per diem is paid rather than a salary, or an office for which there is a salary of less than five hundred dollars ($500.00) per year. No nominating papers shall be filed until the proper Municipal Treasurer's receipt, showing the payment of the filing fee, shall be presented to the election officer with whom the nomination papers are to be filed. (Ref. 32-513 RS Neb.)
§1-807 ELECTIONS; SPECIAL, JOINT. (1) Any issue to be submitted to the registered voters at a special election by the Municipality shall be certified by the Municipal Clerk to the Election Commissioner or County Clerk at least fifty (50) days prior to the election. A special election may be held by mail as provided in sections 32-952 through 32-959 RS Neb. No special election to be conducted by the Election Commissioner or County Clerk shall be held within thirty (30) days prior to or sixty (60) days after the statewide primary election, and no special election to be conducted by the Election Commissioner or County Clerk shall be held within thirty (30) days prior to or sixty (60) days after the statewide general election.
(2) In lieu of submitting the issue at a special election, the Municipality may submit the issue at a statewide primary or general election or at any scheduled county election, except that no such issue shall be submitted at a statewide election or scheduled county election unless the issue to be submitted has been certified by the municipal Clerk to the Election Commissioner or County Clerk by March 1 for the primary election and by September 1 for the general election.
(3) After the Election Commissioner or County Clerk has received the certification of the issue to be submitted, he or she shall be responsible for all matters relating to the submission of the issue to the registered voters, except that the Municipal Clerk shall be responsible for the publication or posting of any required special notice of the submission of such issue other than the notice required to be given of the statewide election issues. The Election Commissioner or County Clerk shall prepare the ballots and issue absentee ballots and shall also conduct the submission of the issue, including the receiving and counting of the ballots on the issue. The election returns shall be made to the Election Commissioner or County Clerk. The ballots, including absentee ballots, shall be counted and canvassed at the same time and in the same manner as the other ballots. Upon completion of the canvass of the vote by the County Canvassing Board, the Election Commissioner or County Clerk shall certify the election results to the Governing Body. The canvass by the County Canvassing Board shall have the same force and effect as if made by the Governing Body. (Ref. 32-559 RS Neb.) (Amended: Ord. #97-114)
§1-808 ELECTIONS; SPECIAL MUNICIPAL. A Special Municipal Election may be held upon notice of such election being prepared and published by the Municipal Clerk, except as otherwise provided by law, not less than five (5) days, nor more than ten (10) days prior to any special election. Such elections shall be conducted in accordance with the Municipal Election Code, section 19-3001, et. seq. RS Neb. (Ref. 19-3003, 19-3006 RS Neb.)
§1-809 ELECTIONS; VOTER QUALIFICATIONS. Electors shall mean every person of the constitutionally prescribed age or upwards, who shall have the right to vote for all officers to be elected to public office, and upon all questions and proposals, lawfully submitted to the voters at any and all elections authorized or provided for by the Constitution or the laws of the State of Nebraska; Provided, no person shall be qualified to vote at any election unless such person shall be a resident of the State and shall have been properly registered with the election official of the county. (Ref. 17-602, 32-102 RS Neb.)
§1-810 ELECTIONS; OFFICERS ELECTED. At the general Municipal election in every even-numbered year, there shall be elected one (1) Council member from each ward and two (2) members of the Municipal Airport Authority Board; Provided, that each third (3rd) election year, one (1) member only shall be elected to the Board. There shall be elected a Mayor every other election year. Members of the Airport Authority Board shall be elected to a six (6) year term of office, members of the City Council shall be elected to a four (4) year term of office, and the Mayor shall be elected to a four (4) year term of office.
§1-811 ELECTIONS; WARDS. The following areas shall constitute the wards of the Municipality:
FIRST WARD. All that part of the Municipality lying north of the centerline of 23rd Street extended to the west boundary of the Municipality and extended east to the centerline of Morton Street; then south on Morton Street to the centerline of 22nd Street; then east along the centerline of 22nd Street to Fulton Street; then south on Fulton Street to the centerline of 21st Street then to the east boundary of the Municipality, constitutes the First Ward.
SECOND WARD. All that portion of the Municipality lying south of the First Ward as described above, and lying north of the centerline of 18th Street extending west to the west boundary line of the Municipality and extending east on the centerline of 18th Street to the centerline of Valley Avenue; then extending north on Valley Avenue to the centerline of 21st Street which constitutes the Second Ward.
THIRD WARD. All that portion of the Municipality lying south of the First Ward from the centerline of 21st Street and Valley Avenue extending east on the centerline of 21st Street to the east boundary of the Municipality and all that portion of the Municipality lying South of the Second Ward as described above, and lying north of the centerline of 14th Street extending to the west boundary of the municipality and extending east to the centerline of Barada Street; then south along the centerline of Barada Street to the center line of 13th Street; then east along the centerline of 13th Street to the centerline of Fulton Street; then north along the centerline of Fulton Street to the centerline 14th Street; then east along the centerline of 14th Street to the east boundary of the Municipality which constitutes the Third Ward.
FOURTH WARD. All that portion of the Municipality lying south of the Third Ward as described above, constitutes the Fourth Ward. (Amended: Ord. #2005-102; Ord. #2011-109)
§1-812 ELECTIONS; WARDS, ELECTION DISTRICTS. The Mayor and City Council shall divide the City into not less than two (2) Wards, as compact in form and equal in population as possible, the boundaries of which are defined above. Each ward shall constitute an election district; Provided, when any Ward shall contain greater than five hundred (500) legal voters, the Mayor and City Council may divide such Ward into two (2) or more election districts.
§1-813 ELECTIONS; PETITION CANDIDATES; PROCEDURE. (1) (a) Any registered voter who was not a candidate in the primary election may have his or her name placed on the general election ballot for a partisan office by filing petitions as prescribed in this section and section 32-621 RS Neb. or by nomination by political party convention or committee.
(b) Any candidate who was defeated in the primary election and any registered voter who was not a candidate in the primary election may have his or her name placed on the general election ballot if a vacancy exists on the ballot under subsection (1) of section 32-626 RS Neb. and the candidate files for the office by petition as prescribed in this section.
(2) (a) The number of signatures of registered voters needed to place the name of a candidate upon the nonpartisan ballot for the general election shall be at least ten percent (10%) of the total number of registered voters voting for Governor or President of the United States of the immediately preceding general election in the Municipality.
(b) The number of signatures of registered voters needed to place the name of a candidate upon the partisan ballot for the general election shall be at least twenty percent (20%) of the total vote for Governor or President of the United States at the immediately preceding general election within the Municipality, not to exceed two thousand (2000).
(3) Petitions for nomination shall conform to the requirements of section 32-628 RS Neb. Petitions shall state the office to be filled and the name and address of the candidate. Petitions for partisan office shall also indicate the party affiliation of the candidate. Petitions shall be signed by registered voters residing in the Municipality and shall be filed with the filing officer in the same manner as provided for candidate filing forms in section 32-607 RS Neb. Petition signers and circulators shall conform to the requirements of sections 32-629 and 32-630 RS Neb. No petition for nomination shall be filed unless there is attached thereto a receipt showing payment of the required filing fee. The petitions shall be filed by September 1 in the year of the general election. (Ref. 32-616 through 32-618 RS Neb.) (Ord. #99-106)
§1-814 ELECTIONS; RECALL PROCEDURE. (1) Any or all of the elected officials of the municipality may be removed from office by recall pursuant to Neb. RS 32-1301 to 32-1309.
(2) Petition circulators shall conform to the requirements of the Election Act. The petition papers shall be procured from the Municipal Clerk. Each petition paper shall conform to the requirements of Neb. RS 32-1304. Prior to the issuance of such petition papers, an affidavit shall be signed and filed with the Municipal Clerk by at least one registered voter. Such voter or voters shall be deemed to be the principal circulator or circulators of the recall petition. The affidavit shall state the name and office of the official sought to be removed and shall request that the Municipal Clerk issue initial petition papers to the principal circulator for circulation. The Municipal Clerk shall notify the principal circulator or circulators that the necessary signatures must be gathered within thirty (30) days from the date of issuing the petitions.
(3) The Municipal Clerk, upon issuing the initial petition papers or any subsequent petition papers, shall enter in a record, to be kept in his or her office, the name of the principal circulator or circulators to whom the papers were issued, the date of issuance, and the number of papers issued. The Municipal Clerk shall certify on the papers the name of the principal circulator or Circulators to whom the papers were issued and the date they were issued. No petition paper shall be accepted as part of the petition unless it bears such certificate. The principal circulator or circulators who check out petitions from the Municipal Clerk may distribute such petitions to registered voters residing in the municipality who may act as circulators of such petitions.
(4) Petition signers shall conform to the requirements of the Election Act. Each signer of a recall petition shall be a registered voter and qualified by his or her place of residence to vote for the office in question on the date of the issuance of the initial petition papers.
(5) A petition demanding that the question of removing an elected official be submitted to the registered voters shall be signed by registered voters equal in number to at least thirty-five percent (35%) of the total vote cast for that office in the last general election, except that for an office for which more than one candidate is chosen, the petition shall be signed by registered voters equal in number to at least thirty-five percent (35%) of the number of votes cast for the person receiving the most votes for that office in the last general election.
(6) The principal circulator or circulators shall file, as one instrument, all petition papers comprising a recall petition for a signature verification with the Municipal Clerk within thirty (30) days after the Municipal Clerk issues the initial petition papers to the principal circulator or circulators. Within fifteen (15) days after the filing of the petition, the Municipal Clerk shall ascertain whether or not the petition is signed by the requisite number of registered voters. No new signatures may be added after the initial filing of the petition papers. No signatures may be removed unless the Municipal Clerk receives an affidavit signed by the person requesting his or her signature be removed before the petitions are filed with the Municipal Clerk for signature verification. If the petition is found to be sufficient, the Municipal Clerk shall attach to the petition a certificate showing the result of such examination. If the requisite number of signatures has not been gathered, the Municipal Clerk shall file the petition in his or her office without prejudice to the filing of a new petition for the same purpose.
(7) If the recall petition is found to be sufficient, the Municipal Clerk shall notify the official whose removal is sought and the Governing Body that sufficient signatures have been gathered. If the official does not resign within five (5) days after receiving the notice, the Governing Body shall order an election to be held not less than thirty (30) nor more than forty-five (45) days after the expiration of the five-day period, except that if any other election is to be held in the municipality within ninety (90) days of the expiration of the five-day period, the Governing Body shall provide for the holding of the removal election on the same day. After the Governing Body sets the date for the recall election, the recall election shall be held regardless of whether the official whose removal is sought resigns before the recall election is held.
(8) If a majority of the votes cast at a recall election are against the removal of the official named on the ballot or the election results in a tie, the official shall continue in office for the remainder of his or her term but may be subject to further recall attempts as provided in subsection (10) of this section. If a majority of the votes cast at a recall election are for the removal of the official named on the ballot, he or she shall, regardless of any technical defects in the recall petition, be deemed removed from office unless a recount is ordered. If the official is deemed removed, the removal shall result in a vacancy in the office which shall be filled as otherwise provided in this Code and state law. If the election results show a margin of votes equal to one percent (1%) or less between the removal or retention of the official in question, the Secretary of State, Election Commissioner, or County Clerk shall order a recount of the votes cast unless the official named on the ballot files a written statement with the Municipal Clerk that he or she does not want a recount. If there are vacancies in the offices of a majority or more of the members of the Governing Body at one time due to the recall of such members, a special election to fill such vacancies shall be conducted as expeditiously as possible by the Secretary of State, Election Commissioner, or County Clerk.
(9) No official who is removed at a recall election or who resigns after the initiation of the recall process shall be appointed to fill the vacancy resulting from his or her removal or the removal of any other member of the same Governing Body during the remainder of his or her term of office.
(10) No recall petition shall be filed against an elected official within twelve (12) months after a recall election has failed to remove him or her from office or within six (6) months after the beginning of his or her term of office or within six (6) months prior to the incumbent filing deadline for the office. (Ref. 31-1301 through 32-1309 RS Neb.) (Ord. #99-107)
§1-815 ELECTIONS; CANDIDATE QUALIFICATIONS. Any person seeking elected office in the Municipality shall be a registered voter prior to holding such office and in addition shall have reached the age of majority. The Mayor and members of the Council shall be residents and qualified electors of the City. (Ref. 17-108.02, 32-4,157 RS Neb.)
§1-816 ELECTIONS; INABILITY TO ASSUME OFFICE. In any general election, where the person who received the highest number of votes is ineligible, disqualified, deceased, or for any other reason is unable to assume the office for which he was a candidate, and the electorate had reasonable notice of such disability at the time of the election, the candidate in such election who received the next highest number of votes shall be declared elected, and shall be entitled to the certificate of election; Provided, that any candidate so declared elected received not less than thirty-five (35%) percent of the total number of votes cast for such office in the election. If any of the qualifications of this section are not met by the candidate to be declared elected, or reasonable notice of the winners ineligibility is not available to the voters, a vacancy in such office shall be declared to exist at the time of commencement of the term and shall be filled as prescribed by law. (Ref. 32-537 (7) & (8) RS Neb.)
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