DeKALB – The early list of candidates who have filed to run for office in local primary elections could boost voters’ interests.
Craig Roman of DeKalb is among those who have filed. Roman is seeking the Democratic nomination for the DeKalb County Board seat from District 6 after a failed run for the DeKalb City Council in April.
Roman previously sought a County Board seat, but was defeated in his last bid by the incumbent, Democrat Ruth Anne Tobias.
“As I’ve run for everything, what I want to do, honestly, is be a representative of the people,” Roman said.
By Tuesday afternoon, 16 people had filed nominating petitions with the elections division of DeKalb County Clerk Doug Johnson’s office, seeking to appear on the 2016 primary ballot. Five partisan, county-level offices will be up for grabs next year, including races for circuit court clerk, coroner, state’s attorney and County Board seats. Voters will also elect precinct committeemen.
The partisan primary election will be held March 15. Those running are seeking to be their party’s candidate. Voters will choose the office holder in the November general election.
According to the clerk’s office, incumbent State’s Attorney Richard Schmack, a Democrat, is not expected to officially declare his candidacy until Monday, which is the last day to file petitions with the clerk’s office.
But three Republican candidates are already in: Sycamore attorney Richard Amato, former DeKalb County State’s Attorney Clay Campbell and Hinckley attorney Charles Rea. The race to be county prosecutor could be the most watched of the election season.
A three-way contest for the Republican nomination could mean extra work for the candidates, said Steve Kuhn, chairman of the DeKalb County Republican Central Committee.
“They are going to have to work to get their names out there,” he said.
Several races may go uncontested.
Court Clerk Maureen Josh has filed to seek re-election, but thus far has no challenger from her party and no one has filed to run as a Democrat. Josh was first elected to the office in 1984.
“I have been fortunate to have excellent staff members who understand public service and who work tirelessly to provide outstanding service to everyone who is in the court system and those who use the court system,” Josh said when she announced in October her plans to seek re-election.
No one has yet indicated publicly that they intend to challenge Dennis Miller in his re-election bid for county coroner. That coroner also serves as coordinator of the DeKalb County Emergency Services Disaster Agency.
Democrat Mark Pietrowski Jr., County Board chairman, has no opponent so far in the 3rd District race. County Board member and vice-chairman Tracy Jones is also the lone Republican candidate to date to file in the 1st District.
Two County Board members appointed this summer have applied to run for full terms.
Republican Timothy Bagby wants to stay on in the 3rd District after being picked to fill the unexpired term of Riley Oncken, who resigned. Democrat Steve Faivre also wants to keep his seat in the 4th District, after being tapped to fill Joseph Bassett’s unexpired term when Bassett stepped down.