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|Qualifying this week for fall elections|
Qualifying for the fall congressional and judicial elections will be held this week, July 9-11.
Locally, qualifying will be held each day from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. at the Ouachita Parish Courthouse. Congressional candidates will qualify at the Secretary of State's office in Baton Rouge.
District Attorney Jerry Jones and every member of the 4th Judicial District Court bench are expected to qualify for re-election. The district attorney and judges serve six-year terms.
Candidates for Monroe City Court and West Monroe City Court will qualify this week, too, while justices of the peace, constables and the city marshals for both Monroe and West Monroe are scheduled to formally declare their candidacies as well.
Local elections will be held in conjunction with the fall federal elections, which include campaigns for the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives.
U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-New Orleans, is expected to qualify for a third term, while state Treasurer John Kennedy, R-Zachary, is expected to be leading Republican candidate in the Senate race.
U.S. Rep. Rodney Alexander, R-Quitman, is expected to qualify for another two-year term, representing the 5th District of the House of Representatives from Louisiana. No one has announced his or her intentions to challenge Alexander, though state Rep. Rick Gallot, D-Grambling, has been mentioned as a possible candidate to oppose Alexander. Alexander was first elected in 2002.
Primary elections are scheduled for Oct. 4. The general election, which will feature the presidential race as well, is scheduled for Nov. 4. Party primary elections for congressional races are scheduled for Sept. 6.
Additionally, the October ballot will mark the first time voters in Ouachita and Morehouse parishes will elect two new judges in the 4th Judicial District Court.
The state Legislature created two new judicial posts in the 4th District to help alleviate an overloaded case load in the district court system. One of the new judicial seats is an at-large post. The other judicial post is known as a "minority subdistrict," meaning a candidate elected to the subdistrict seat will be picked among mostly minority voters.
Though he has not made an official announcement, Monroe City Councilman Robert C. Johnson is expected to run for the minority subdistrict seat. Danny Ellender of Mer Rouge is expected to qualify in the at-large race.
Though qualifying won't take place until later this week, campaigning has begun in at least one local race.
Yard signs and other campaign literature in support of Chuck Cook's bid to unseat Monroe City Court Judge Tammy Lee began appearing in recent weeks.
Cook is a former Ouachita Parish sheriff; he served as sheriff from 1996-2000.
Ouachita Parish Clerk of Court Bill Hodge said his office has not witnessed any unusual activity ahead of qualifying, but he said that is not unusual.
"I never have any interest until qualifying opens that morning," Hodge said.
Individuals interested in running in the fall elections should be prepared to present their identification and pay all qualifying fees in cash, money order, or certified cashier's check.
Hodge said potential candidates who do not know how much money qualifying will cost should call the Clerk of Court's office.
The following is a complete list of the individual offices up for grabs in November, including current office holders:
In Ouachita Parish:
4th Judicial District Attorney - Jerry Jones
District Court Judge, Div A - Scott Leehy
District Court Judge, Div B - Sharon I. Marchman
District Court Judge, Div C - Wilson Rambo
District Court Judge, Div D - H. Stephens Winters
District Court Judge, Div E - Marcus R. Clark
District Court Judge, Div F - Wendell Manning
District Court Judge, Div G - Carl V. Sharp
District Court Judge, Div H - Benjamin Jones
District Court Judge, Div I - Alvin R. Sharp
District Court Judge, Div J - New Seat
District Court Judge, Minority Subdistrict - New Seat
Justice of the Peace, Ward 1 - Renford Rodgers
Justice of the Peace, Ward 2 - Tommy Brunt
Justice of the Peace, Ward 6 - Dorothy Heacock
Justice of the Peace, Ward 7 - Helen Johnson
Justice of the Peace, Ward 8 - James Nolan
Justice of the Peace, Ward 9 - Ben Owens
All Ouachita Parish Constables
In the City of Monroe:
Monroe City Court Judge, Div A - Tammy Lee
Monroe City Court Judge, Div B - Fred Amman, III
Monroe City Court Judge, Div C - Larry Jefferson
Monroe City Marshal - Wince Highshaw
In the City of West Monroe:
City Court Judge - Jim Norris
West Monroe City Marshal - Bill Guyton