Local government

Most local races for political office are uncontested

VALE – Prospective candidates for public office at the state and county level have until Tuesday, March 12, to file for the May 21 primary election.

So far only local one position – Malheur County justice of the peace – is contested.

In that position, incumbent Margie Mahoney will face a challenge from John Carey, a deputy with the Malheur County Sheriff’s Office.

Malheur County Commissioner Ron Jacobs, a Republican, has filed for a second four-year term. So far, he is unopposed.

Travis Johnson, the incumbent Malheur County sheriff, has filed for reelection and is, so far, unopposed. Johnson will seek a four-year term as sheriff.

He was appointed sheriff in April.

Dave Ingram, Malheur County assessor, initially filed for another four-year term in September. Yet Monday, March 4, he pulled his name from the candidates list. Not long after, Chris Russell, the chief appraiser in the county assessor’s office, filed for Ingram’s position.

State Sen. Lynn Findley, a Republican from Vale, has been barred from running for reelection by the Oregon secretary of state’s office because of excessive unexcused absences from the Senate during the 2023 Legislative session. He announced last fall he wouldn’t seek reelection, before judges decided against Findley and others.

Powell Butte resident Mike McLane, a former state representative and Oregon House Republican leader, is running for Findley’s position.

State Rep. Mark Owens, R-Crane, has also filed for reelection. Owens seeks another two-year term in the House and he represents District 60 which includes, Baker, Grant, Harney, Lake and Malheur counties and portions of Deschutes County. No one has filed to run against Owens.

Military/overseas absentee voter ballots will be mailed from the Malheur County Clerk’s office on or before April 6. Out-of-state absentee voter ballots will be mailed on April 22. Local ballots will be mailed out May 1.

The last day for Oregonians to register to vote for the primary election is Tuesday, April 20.

Ballots must be dropped in an official ballot drop box no later than 8 p.m., Tuesday, May 21, or sent by mail to the county clerk’s office postmarked no later than Election Day.

News tip? Contact reporter Pat Caldwell at [email protected]

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