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Don’t just sit there

The filing period for city of Ashland elective offices opened on May 30, and 10 candidates have already submitted prospective petitions to get on the November ballot for the nine available positions. That’s a good start, though so far several spots have attracted only one candidate, most often the incumbent. Voters are better served when there is competition for public office rather than incumbents running unopposed.

There’s plenty of time: the filing deadline is Aug. 16. But if you’re thinking about making a bid, don’t put it off. Petitions bearing the signatures of 25 registered voters are needed to qualify for the ballot, and those signatures must be turned in by the deadline.

One added enticement this year is that no fewer than four City Council seats are on the ballot thanks to resignations by sitting council members. The makeup of the council has already changed with the appointed replacements, and it could change even further depending on the outcome Nov. 6. If you want to have a direct impact on the direction of the city and the decisions that get made in its governance, now is your chance.

Three seats on the Parks and Recreation Commission are also up this fall. The commission came in for withering criticism in the past year over decisions involving the city’s Senior Program and operation of the senior center, and an ultimately unsuccessful recall election was mounted. Those who raised their voices then have a chance now to step forward as candidates.

For details on running, visit the city website at www.ashland.or.us/News.asp?NewsID=4000.

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