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Running for Public Office


  • The City Charter (Article 5 - Elections and Article 6 - Elective and Appointive Offices), provides detailed information about candidates filing for office and elections.
  •  Regular City elections are held in each even numbered year on the same date as state and federal elections. The elections of all city officials are non-partisan.
  • The electors of the city elect the Mayor to two-year terms.
  • Members of the City Council are elected to four-year terms. Three members of the City Council are elected at the regular City election in November of each even numbered year.
  • All persons elected to City offices at the regular City election shall take office at the first regular City Council meeting in January following the election, unless the time for taking office is extended by the City Council.

Qualifications of Elective Office:

According to the City Charter, "Elective officials shall be registered electors of the City, who shall have resided within the City for six months or more, and shall be at least 21 years of age on the date the office is to be filled." It also states, "The election of all City officials as provided in this charter shall be non-partisan (City Charter, Section 6.4).

Nominating Petitions for 2021

Nominating Petitions must be in by_____________, by 4:00 PM

Withdrawals of Nominating Petitions must be done by _________________, by 4:00 PM

What's Available?  












A supply of official petition forms are provided and maintained by the City Clerk. Before the City Clerk furnishes a nominating petition to any person, the City Clerk must place upon it in ink the name of the candidate and the title of the office for which the person is to be a candidate. No petition which has been altered with respect to such entries shall be received by the City Clerk for filing (City Charter, Section 5.11).

Persons desiring to qualify as candidates for any elective office shall file a petition with the City Clerk, signed by not less than 15 nor more than 30 registered electors of the City, not later than the date and time for the filing of nominating petitions for state and county offices. The notice of the last day and time for filing nominating petitions is published in the DeWitt/Bath Review at least one week before, and not more than three weeks before, the deadline date.

When a petition is filed by a person other than the person whose name appears on it as a candidate, it may be accepted only when accompanied by the written consent of the candidate (City Charter, Section 5.12).

Under Michigan election law, all candidates submitting a petition for a City office must submit a notarized "Affidavit of Identity and Receipt of Filing" form (supplied by the City Clerk) when filing. A candidate who fails to submit this form when filing for office is ineligible to appear on the ballot.

If, upon the expiration of the time for filing nomination petitions, the number of candidates on the petitions does not exceed twice the number of candidates to be elected to an office, than no primary election shall be held for the office (City Charter, Section 5.5.4).