§ 163-291. Partisan primaries and elections.
Overview of Statute
Article 24 defines the election process for of candidates for office in cities, towns, villages, and special districts whose elections are conducted on a partisan basis, with several exceptions as listed in this section.
The nomination of candidates for office in cities, towns, villages, and special districts whose elections are conducted on a partisan basis shall be governed by the provisions of this Chapter applicable to the nomination of county officers, and the terms “county board of elections,” “chairman of the county board of elections,” “county officers,” and similar terms shall be construed with respect to municipal elections to mean the appropriate municipal officers and candidates, except that:
(1) The dates of primary and election shall be as provided in G.S. 163-279.
(2) A candidate seeking party nomination for municipal or district office shall file notice of candidacy with the board of elections no earlier than 12:00 noon on the first Friday in July and no later than 12:00 noon on the third Friday in July preceding the election, except:
a. In the year following a federal decennial census, a candidate seeking party nomination for municipal or district office in any city which elects members of its governing board on a district basis, or requires that candidates reside in a district in order to run, shall file his notice of candidacy with the board of elections no earlier than 12:00 noon on the fourth Monday in July and no later than 12:00 noon on the second Friday in August preceding the election; and
b. In the second year following a federal decennial census, if the election is held then under G.S. 160A-23.1, a candidate seeking party nomination for municipal or district office shall file his notice of candidacy with the board of elections at the same time as notices of candidacy for county officers are required to be filed under G.S. 163-106 [, 163-106.1, 163-106.2, 163-106.3, 163-106.4, 163-106.5, and 163-106.6].
No person may file a notice of candidacy for more than one municipal office at the same election. If a person has filed a notice of candidacy for one office with the county board of elections under this section, then a notice of candidacy may not later be filed for any other municipal office for that election unless the notice of candidacy for the first office is withdrawn first.
(3) The filing fee for municipal and district primaries shall be fixed by the governing board not later than the day before candidates are permitted to begin filing notices of candidacy. There shall be a minimum filing fee of five dollars ($5.00). The governing board shall have the authority to set the filing fee at not less than five dollars ($5.00) nor more than one percent (1%) of the annual salary of the office sought unless one percent (1%) of the annual salary of the office sought is less than five dollars ($5.00), in which case the minimum filing fee of five dollars ($5.00) will be charged. The fee shall be paid to the board of elections at the time notice of candidacy is filed.
(4) The municipal ballot may not be combined with any other ballot.
(5) The canvass of the primary and second primary shall be held on the seventh day following the primary or second primary. In accepting the filing of complaints concerning the conduct of an election, a board of elections shall be subject to the rules concerning Sundays and holidays set forth in G.S. 103-5.
(6) Candidates having the right to demand a second primary shall do so not later than 12:00 noon on the Thursday following the canvass of the first primary.
(1971, c. 835, s. 1; 1973, c. 870, s. 1; 1975, c. 370, s. 2; 1983, c. 330, s. 2; 1985, c. 599, ss. 2, 3; 1989 (Reg. Sess., 1990), c. 1012, s. 3; 1995 (Reg. Sess., 1996), c. 553, s. 2; 1999-227, s. 5; 2003-278, s. 10(e), (f); 2006-192, s. 4; 2009-414, s. 2; 2017-6, s. 3; 2018-146, s. 3.1(a), (b).)
The former section, § 163A-1615, prior to re-recodification included internal references to §§ 163A-973, 163A-974, 163A-975, 163A-976, 163A-977, and 163A-978, which were sections derived from § 163-106 and created in the initial recodification by S.L. 2017-6, § 3, pursuant to direction of the Revisor of Statutes. Upon repeal of the recodification, the Revisor did not return all the new sections to the former § 163-106, but instead retained the distinct sections and transferred them, respectively, to the new §§ 163-106.1, 163-106.2, 163-106.3, 163-106.4, 163-106.5, 163-106.6. The apparently missing references to these sections within the statutory text have been included in brackets.
1. Definition for day
The term “day” means calendar day.
2. Definition for city
The term “city” means any incorporated city, town, or village.
3. 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.
4. 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.
5. Definition for person
The term “person” means any business entity, corporation, insurance company, labor union, or professional association.
6. Definition for Ballot
(Effective until January 1, 2018 or September 1, 2019 – see note) “Ballot” means an instrument on which a voter indicates that voter’s choice for a ballot item so that it may be recorded as a vote for or against a certain candidate or referendum proposal. The term “ballot” may include a paper ballot to be counted by hand, a paper ballot to be counted on an electronic
scanner, the face of a lever voting machine, the image on a direct record electronic unit, or a ballot used on any other voting system.
(Effective January 1, 2018 or September 1, 2019 – see note) “Ballot” means an instrument on which a voter indicates that voter’s choice for a ballot item so that it may be recorded as a vote for or against a certain candidate or referendum proposal, and is evidenced by an individual paper document that bears marks made by the voter by hand or through electronic
means, whether preprinted or printed in the voting enclosure.
7. Definition for Office
(4) Office. – The elected office for which the candidate has filed or petitioned.
(2006-155, s. 1; 2006-259, s. 48(a); 2017-6, s. 3.)
8. 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.
9. 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.
10. 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.
11. 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.