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Three candidates apply for the at-large seat on the Des Moines City Council



Des Moines, Iowa – Three people, Robert Pate, Mike Simonson, and Rose Marie Smith, have submitted applications to compete for the vacant at-large Des Moines City Council seat.

This is not the definitive list, even though just three candidates have officially filed. As to Jamie Fitzgerald, the Commissioner of Elections, candidates have a week remaining to appear on the ballot.

“We anticipate a lot more coming in here in the next week,” he said.

Candidates must obtain at least 75 signatures from Des Moines voters on an affidavit of candidacy to be eligible to file. This implies that any citizen of the United States residing in Des Moines who is at least 18 years old may cast a ballot.
When she was elected mayor, Connie Boesen left this seat unfilled in the middle of her term.

“Historically, in Des Moines especially, it’s a four-year term for mayor, for city council. So they’re all on a four-year term,” Fitzgerald said.

When Boesen quit her position, she still had two years remaining in her term. The final two years of the tenure will be served by the at-large council member, whoever is chosen to hold that position.

“People have more interaction with us than any other elected body and that’s why it’s even more important for a local city election that people get out and vote,” Boesen said.

Local government may not come to mind for most people when they think about government. Nonetheless, local government has a crucial role to play. The incoming at-large council member will share this duty.

“It’s the roads. It’s picking up the garbage. It’s doing snow removal like today. It’s how we effectively make this city work for the citizens that live in it and the city council oversees that,” Boesen said.

For example, according to Boesen, local input led the city council to advance a project by five years to address flooding concerns.

On Tuesday, March 19, there will be a special election. Open polling hours are 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Fitzgerald reports that officials are deciding on polling places right now. Well in advance of the election, those will be available on the Polk County website. Go to the Secretary of State’s website to determine which polling place you will attend.

Requests for an absentee ballot to be mailed in can be made until March 4 at 5:00 p.m.

The Polk County Election Office’s early in-person voting period concludes on March 18 at 5:00 p.m.



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