The road to the August primary election and the November general election officially began Monday with the start of filing week.
Would-be candidates have through Friday afternoon to file the necessary paperwork with county auditor offices to get their names on the ballot.
By early Monday afternoon, 36 candidates had already filed for 36 positions that will be on the ballot in Lewis County. The top two candidates in each primary race with three or more candidates will move on to the general election in November.
The early filers included many expected names, such as in the 3rd Congressional District where incumbent Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Battle Ground, filed along with Democratic challenger Brent Hennrich and Republican opponents Joe Kent and Heidi St. John.
County races will also loom large in this year’s election with races for county commissioner, auditor, clerk, coroner, assessor, prosecuting attorney, sheriff and treasurer up for grabs. In those races, nearly all incumbents had already filed for reelection as of 2 p.m. Monday. They included Auditor Larry Grove, Clerk Scott Tinney, Coroner Warren McLeod, Prosecutor Jonathan Meyer, Treasurer Arny Davis and Sheriff Rob Snaza.
As expected, Snaza has drawn a challenger in Tracy Murphy, of the Centralia Police Department.
In the state House, all Republican incumbents wasted no time declaring intentions to retain their seats. They included 20th District Reps. Peter Abbarno, R-Centralia, and Ed Orcutt, R-Kalama, as well as 19th District Reps. Jim Walsh, R-Aberdeen, and Joel McEntire, R-Cathlamet.
More than a dozen candidates on Monday had already filed for open precinct committee officer (PCO) positions. Among them was Lewis County Republicans Chair Brandon Svenson, who has been asked to resign that post by several PCOs following a public clash with Murphy, as well as Lewis County Commissioner Lee Grose, who is finishing the term of the late Gary Stamper. Also pursuing a PCO position in Chehalis is CT Publishing Vice President Franklin Taylor. CT Publishing produces The Chronicle.
In local judicial races, incumbents Wade Samuelson and R.W. Buzzard each filed for new four-year terms.
For an updated list on all the races and which candidates file throughout the week, visit https://voter.votewa.gov/CandidateList.aspx?e=876&c=21.
Earlier this month, Lewis County’s auditor’s office strongly urged candidates to use the office’s online filing system to file, which is “very simple and can be completed in just a few minutes,” according to Terry Jouper, elections supervisor.
Candidates who attend the office in person for filing will be required to use the same online system.
Online filing will close at 4 p.m. on May 20. In-person filing will be held from 8 a.m. on to 4:30 p.m. during the week. To file online, go to https://elections.lewiscountywa.gov and select “Online Candidate Filing.” Candidates who choose to file electronically may pay their filing fees online by credit card.
Mail-in declarations of candidacy must also be submitted by May 20.
For mail-ins, the declaration of candidacy form must be complete, the oath signed and any filing fee included.
Declaration forms are available on the elections website at https://elections.lewiscountywa.gov under the “Candidate Information’’ tab on the left.
Candidates wishing to withdraw must do so by Monday, May 23. Forms can be filed electronically, by mail or in person and must be received no later than 4:30 p.m. Filing fees are not refundable. Withdrawal forms are available on the elections website under the “Forms” tab on the left or in person at the auditor’s office.
If no individual files for specific positions, those positions will have a special three-day filing period at the auditor’s office from May 25 to May 27. If no candidate files for an office during the special filing period, the office shall be lapsed and deemed stricken from the ballot with no write-in votes counted and no candidate certified as elected. There is no three-day special filing period for PCO positions.
To see which offices are open for election or candidates who have filed, go to the elections website under “Candidate Information,” select “2022 Offices Open for Election” to see offices, incumbents and filing fees. Select “Candidates Who Have Filed” to view up-to-date candidate filings.
The Thurston County Auditor’s Office encourages would-be candidates to file online at https://ThurstonVotes.org until 4 p.m. on May 20 at 4 p.m. Credit cards are accepted.
There will also be drive-thru and in-person filing services available between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. at 2400 Evergreen Park Drive SW in Olympia during filing week.
Candidates can also mail their filing information to Thurston County Elections: 2000 Lakeridge Dr. SW, Olympia, WA, 98502.
All candidate filings and filing fees must be received by 4:30 p.m. Friday, May 20.
Filing fees vary for each elected position.
The order of candidates on the ballot will be determined by a random lot draw shortly after 4:30 p.m. on Friday, May 20. The drawing will be held at the elections office and will be streamed via Facebook Live. Visit https://facebook.com/TCAuditor to view.