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Candidate-filing period begins May 18

Secretary of State Mark Ritchie reminds Minnesotans interested in running for public office that the candidate-filing period for federal, state, county and some local offices begins Tuesday, May 18 at 8 a.m. and closes Tuesday, June 1 at 5 p.m.

"It is important to note that filing begins almost six weeks earlier this year," Ritchie said. "The secretary of state's office will be open at 8 a.m. on May 18 to accept federal, state and legislative candidate filings. Also, candidates from Greater Minnesota have the option to file in their county of residence."

The filing period was moved up from July to May when legislation was passed to hold the state primary on August 10, to provide military and overseas voters more time to cast their ballots and return them by Election Day. The new law requires that the state provide a minimum 45-day absentee ballot window prior to a regularly scheduled primary or general election.

Requirements for filing vary depending on the office, whether the candidate is a member of a major political party, a minor political party, or an independent, and whether the office is partisan or nonpartisan. Candidates for state Senate, House of Representatives, judicial and constitutional offices have a choice to either file with the secretary of state or in their county of residence. Candidates for U.S. Congress must file with the secretary of state. Candidates for county offices must file with their county auditor. Filing dates may vary for candidates for municipal and school district offices.

Minnesotans interested in running for office may visit the secretary of state's Web site to find informational guides for candidates as well as downloadable forms and instructions. To access guides and forms for candidates, visit:

Candidates for local offices should contact their county auditor, municipal clerk, or school clerk for additional information about filing and filing deadlines for offices up for election in their respective jurisdictions.

The secretary of state's office will post a listing of candidates who have filed for office on its Web site beginning May 18 and will update that list regularly as additional filings are received. This listing will include local candidates if filing information is provided to this office by local jurisdictions.