§ 163-294.1. Death of candidates or elected officers.
Overview of Statute
In municipal and special district elections if a candidate for political party nomination for office dies, becomes disqualified, or withdraws the election process shall follow G.S. 163-112, G.S. 163-114, G.S. 160A-63, or Board procedures depending on the circumstances as laid out in this section.
(a) This section shall apply only to municipal and special district elections.
(b) If a candidate for political party nomination for office dies, becomes disqualified, or withdraws before the primary but after the ballots have been printed, the provisions of G.S. § 163-112 shall govern.
If a candidate for nomination in a nonpartisan municipal primary dies, becomes disqualified, or withdraws before the primary but after the ballots have been printed, the board of elections shall determine whether or not there is time to reprint the ballots. If the board determines that there is not enough time to reprint the ballots, the deceased or disqualified candidate’s name shall remain on the ballots. If he receives enough votes for nomination, such votes shall be disregarded and the candidate receiving the next highest number of votes below the number necessary for nomination shall be declared nominated. If the death or disqualification of the candidate leaves only two candidates for each office to be filled, the nonpartisan primary shall not be held and all candidates shall be declared nominees.
If a nominee for political party nomination dies, becomes disqualified, or withdraws after the primary and before election day, the provisions of G.S. § 163-114 shall govern.
If a candidate in a nonpartisan election dies, becomes disqualified, or withdraws before election day and after the ballots have been printed, the board of elections shall determine whether there is enough time to reprint the ballots. If there is not enough time to reprint the ballots, and should the deceased or disqualified candidate receive enough votes to be elected, the board of elections shall declare the office vacant, and it shall be filled as provided by law.
(c) If a person elected to any city office dies, becomes disqualified, or resigns on or after election day and before he has qualified by taking the oath of office, the office shall be deemed vacant, and shall be filled as provided by law.
(d) A vacancy that occurs in a municipal or special district elective office shall be filled by the governing body as provided in G.S. 160A-63. In the case of a special district, the words “city council” as used in G.S. 160A-63, shall mean the governing body of the special district.
(1971, c. 835, s. 1; 1985, c. 619; 2017-6, s. 3; 2018-146, s. 3.1(a), (b).)
1. Definition for political party
The term “political party” means any political party organized or operating in this State, whether or not that party is recognized under the provisions of G.S. 163A-950. A special definition of “political party organization” that applies only in Part 2 of this Article is set forth in G.S. 163A-1475. An affiliated party committee is deemed a political party for this Article as set forth in G.S. 163A-1416 and G.S. 163A-1417.
2. Definition for day
The term “day” means calendar day.
3. Definition for city
The term “city” means any incorporated city, town, or village.
4. 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.
5. 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.
6. Definition for person
The term “person” means any business entity, corporation, insurance company, labor union, or professional association.
7. 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.
8. 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.)
9. 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.
10. 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.
11. 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.
12. 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: 53 Op. Atty. Gen. 27, Currin, Oct. 19, 1983
Citation: 53 Op. Atty. Gen. 27, Currin
Case Summary: May a candidate in a nonpartisan municipal election withdraw his candidacy after the filing deadline and have his name removed from the ballot? Conclusion: Yes