Candidate packets for this spring’s Durango City Council election – in which two seats will be up for grabs – will become available Thursday at Durango City Hall.
Residents interested in campaigning for City Council should plan to pick up a candidate packet from Faye Harmer, city clerk, when they become available later this week, according to a city news release. Candidates are required to schedule a meeting with Harmer in order to pick up their packets. She can be reached by phone at 375-5010 or by email.
Mayor Barbara Noseworthy and Councilor Kim Baxter recently announced they will not seek reelection to City Council in the upcoming election after each serving one four-year term, meaning two of the five City Council seats are up for grabs this year.
Eligible candidates must be registered electors of the city. Candidates are selected at-large, which means all registered voters of Durango may vote for any candidate, as opposed to being restricted by specific wards or districts, according to the city’s elections webpage.
Candidates must collect at least 25 penned signatures on a petition form and return the form to the city clerk by Feb. 7, Harmer said. Candidates can start petitioning on Jan. 18. Per state statute, candidates can circulate petitions between the 76th day before the local election and the 56th day before the election.
In 2021, seven people picked up candidate forms from the city clerk’s office, but only five candidates followed through and gathered signatures to get on the ballot, she said.
“It’s a great service to the community but it is a labor of love,” she said. “There’s a lot of time involved for very little compensation. And then of course, you have public input and the varying opinions on topics.”
She said being a member of City Council is a tough but great job.
Baxter, who is not seeking reelection, said in a December interview with The Durango Herald that thoughtfulness and dedication to studying and understanding issues before they reach the City Council chambers is a strong quality for a councilor.
She said she spends a lot of time thinking about upcoming meeting topics, talking to people and asking questions well before the topics are formally addressed by City Council. She often thinks about how a given topic can impact the city in the future and what it is the city is trying to achieve.
Interacting with residents, businesses and the community at large can consume a lot of time, in addition to board and commission meetings, she said.
“It’s not to be taken lightly,” she said.