Ocean County News

Deadline for School Board Candidates Fast Approaching

CANDIDATES seeking school board seats have until 4 p.m., Monday, July 30 to file their nominating petitions at the Ocean County Clerk’s Office in order to have their name placed on the Nov. 6 General Election Ballot, according to Ocean County Clerk Scott M. Colabella.

Nominating petitions for School Board can be obtained in person at either the Ocean County Clerk’s Main Office, at the Ocean County Courthouse, Election Services, Room 107 at 118 Washington St., Toms River, or at the Ocean County Southern Service Center, 179 South Main St., Manahawkin. The offices are staffed from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

“The Ocean County Clerk’s Office makes every effort to inform potential candidates of approaching filing deadlines and about the process to file,” said Ocean County Freeholder John P. Kelly, who serves as liaison to the County Clerk. “Through the office’s website, social media, and other avenues, County Clerk Colabella provides the information needed by both candidates and voters.”

Colabella noted new state laws have resulted in some changes to the petition filing process.

Colabella said candidates can now file jointly for the same office, title and term.

“Simply, more than one candidate can appear and circulate the same petition for the same office and term,” he said. “In the past, petitions had to be filed separately, even if all the candidates were running on one slate.”

In addition, candidates now have the option of selecting a slogan of no more than three words to appear on the ballot under their name. The slogan selection is now part of the petition.

Colabella said all candidates are now required to file a Disclosure Statement with their petition. The statement declares a candidate is not a disqualified voter and has not been convicted of a disqualifying crime.

“It’s important potential candidates know the requirements in order to help the petition filing process go smoothly,” he said. “It’s also important that candidates get their paperwork in on time.”

Colabella said all Ocean County school districts now hold their Board of Education elections in November.

“A law signed in 2014 moved the petition filing deadline for school board candidates from June to the last Monday in July to provide candidates with more time to submit their petitions,” Colabella said.

A total of 72 school board seats will appear on the November ballot in various school districts throughout Ocean County. A complete listing of all candidates who file petitions for school board will be available shortly after the July 30 deadline at www.oceancountyclerk.com or www.facebook.com/oceancountyclerk.

School board candidates seeking additional information on the petition filing process can contact the Ocean County Clerk’s Election Office at (732) 929-2153.

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