While national and state elections often garner the most attention, local elections for city council and board of trustee positions can often have a more direct, immediate impact to local residents.
On Monday, the filing period for local offices begins at 8 a.m. and continues through Wednesday at 5 p.m. for the upcoming April 2 election.
Ardmore, Lone Grove, Dickson, Springer, Healdton, Wilson and Ratliff City will all have seats up for grabs.
Prospective candidates for Ardmore’s races are required to file with Ardmore City Clerk Ken Campbell at City Hall, all other candidates can file at the Carter County Election Board.
“Sometimes you have a lot of people filing for a position, sometimes the city will have to appoint someone,” Diane Hall, Carter County Election Board secretary, said. “But usually the turnout in these elections aren’t really high. The local elections affect us as residents. I think these elections are just as important as the state and federal elections.”
Positions up for election and the requirements by city:
 
Ardmore
Ward 1-Northeast, the seat currently held by Vice-Mayor Keith King who previously announced he did not intend to run for reelection and Ward 4-Southeast, currently held by Mayor Sheryl Ellis who has announced that she plans to run for reelection.
Prospective candidates must be at least 25 years old and be “freeholders” or land/property owners within the city limits and within the prospective ward. The candidate must also pay a $200 filing fee.
“The filing fee is reimbursable,” Campbell said. “If you win you get that back, but even if you don’t win, if you get at least 30 percent of the vote, you get that back. That’s to cover the cost of the election in the event that someone signs up and doesn’t even try to win.”
Campbell said the city’s current ordinances pre-date his 26 years with the city.
While incumbent city commissioner races often fail to draw an opponent, close contests aren’t unheard of.
“One year we actually even had a runoff,” Campbell said. “But it’s more common to not have an election at all.”
While interest in local elections often lags behind national and statewide elections, the impacts they have locally can be far more significant.
“Interest in local government needs to be more important to all of us,” Campbell said. “The decisions made on the commission affect us immediately. Federal-wise it may not be as direct to the local citizen. A lot of the things we focus on are local, everything we decide on is within our city limits.”

Dickson
Ward 1, currently held by Jarren Preston, Ward 3 held by Aaron Custer, and clerk/treasurer held by Deborah Preston.
Prospective candidates must be a registered voter and a resident of the ward for six months prior to the filing period.

Healdton
Seats include Ward 1, Ward 3 and Ward 4 along with a tax proposition.
Prospective candidates must have residency in the ward.

Lone Grove
Ward 5, currently held by Mickie Davis.
Prospective candidates must have residency in the ward.

Ratliff City
Three full terms for board of trustees held by Doreetha McLemore, Micah Newell and Bob Davis, and one unexpired term that has been unoccupied for more than 7 years.  Prospective candidates must be a registered voter and a resident of the ward for six months prior to the filing period.

Springer
Three positions
Prospective candidates must be a registered voter and a resident of the ward for six months prior to the filing period.

Wilson
Ward 1, currently held by David Newby, Ward 3, held by Juanita Seagroves, chief of police currently held by Interim Chief Kevin Colely, street commissioner, which has been empty for 4 years, city clerk/treasurer held by Ann Marutzky, and mayor held by Frank Schaaf.
Prospective candidates must have residency in the prospective ward and/or city limits.