§ 163-290. Alternative methods of determining the results of municipal elections.
Overview of Statute
Each voting district in the state must employ one of the following methods for nominating candidates and determining election results: partisan primary and election method, nonpartisan primary and election method, nonpartisan plurality method, or the nonpartisan election and runoff election method.
(a) Each city, town, village, and special district in this State shall operate under one of the following alternative methods of nominating candidates for and determining the results of its elections:
(1) The partisan primary and election method set out in G.S. 163-291.
(2) The nonpartisan primary and election method set out in G.S. 163-294.
(3) The nonpartisan plurality method set out in G.S. 163-292.
(4) The nonpartisan election and runoff election method set out in G.S. 163-293.
(b) Each city whose charter provides for partisan municipal elections as of January 1, 1972, shall operate under the partisan primary and election method until such time as its charter is amended to provide for nonpartisan elections. Each city, town, village, and special district whose elections are by charter or general law nonpartisan may select the nonpartisan primary and election method, the nonpartisan plurality method, or the nonpartisan election and runoff election method by resolution of the municipal governing board adopted and filed with the State Board of Elections not later than 5:00 P.M. Monday, January 31, 1972, except that a city whose charter provides for a nonpartisan primary as of January 1, 1972, may not select the plurality method unless its charter is so amended. If the municipal governing board does not exercise its option to select another choice before that time, the municipality shall operate under the method specified in the following table:
Cities, towns and villages of less than 5,000 Plurality
Cities, towns and villages of 5,000 or more Election and Runoff Election
Special districts Plurality
After January 31, 1972, each city, town and village may change its method of election from one to another of the methods set out in subsection (a) by act of the General Assembly or in the manner provided by law for amendment of its charter.
(1971, c. 835, s. 1; 2017-6, s. 3; 2018-146, s. 3.1(a), (b).)
1. Definition for city
The term “city” means any incorporated city, town, or village.
2. Definition for board
The term “board” means the State Board with respect to all candidates for State, legislative, and judicial offices and the county board of elections with respect to all candidates for county and municipal offices. The term means the State Board with respect to all statewide referenda and the county board of elections conducting all local referenda.
3. Definition for Board
Board. – Any State board, commission, council, committee, task force,
authority, or similar public body, however denominated, created by statute or
executive order, as determined and designated by the State Board, except for
those public bodies that have only advisory authority.
4. Definition for State
“State” means a state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.
5. Definition for election
The term “election” means any general or special election, a first or second primary, a run-off election, or an election to fill a vacancy. The term “election” shall not include any local or statewide referendum.
6. Definition for Election
“Election” means the event in which voters cast votes in ballot items concerning proposals or candidates for office in this State or the United States. The term includes primaries, general elections, referenda, and special elections.
7. Definition for candidate
The term “candidate” means any individual who, with respect to a public office listed in G.S. 163A-1411(80), has taken positive action for the purpose of bringing about that individual’s nomination, retention, or election to public office. Examples of positive action include any of the following:
a. Filing a notice of candidacy, filing a notice to be retained, or a petition requesting to be a candidate.
b. Being certified as a nominee of a political party for a vacancy.
c. Otherwise qualifying as a candidate in a manner authorized by law.
d. Making a public announcement of a definite intent to run for public office in a particular election.
e. Receiving funds or making payments or giving the consent for anyone else to receive funds or transfer anything of value for the purpose of bringing about that individual’s nomination or election to office. Transferring anything of value includes incurring an obligation to transfer anything of value. Status as a candidate for the purpose of this Article continues if the individual is receiving contributions to repay loans or cover a deficit or is making expenditures to satisfy obligations from an election already held. Special definitions of “candidate” and “candidate campaign committee” that apply only in Part 2 of this Article are set forth in G.S. 163A-1475.
8. Definition for Candidate
“Candidate” means any individual who, with respect to a public office listed in G.S. 163A-1411(80), has filed a notice of candidacy, notice of retention, or a petition requesting to be a candidate, or has been certified as a nominee of a political party for a vacancy, or has otherwise qualified as a candidate in a manner authorized by law, or has filed a statement of organization under G.S. 163A-1412 and is required to file periodic financial disclosure statements under G.S. 163A-1418.
North Carolina Cases
Case Name: McDowell v. Edmisten
Citation: 523 F. Supp. 416
Federal District Court: Eastern District of North Carolina
Case PDF: McDowell v. Edmisten
Case Summary: Temporary denial by county board of elections of annexed subdivision residents' right to vote in city election and right to file for public office was justified since there existed a dispute between the United States Justice Department and the city concerning annexation of those subdivisions, and thus injunctive relief would not be granted under statute prohibiting the deprivation of civil rights by state action.