Election Information

General Information


  • The next regular election will be held in 2020.  The primary election is scheduled for August 4, 2020, and the general election is scheduled for November 3, 2020.

Write-in Candidates for Primary Election

Q. What is a write-in candidate? How is a write-in candidate different from a regular candidate? A write-in candidate is a person who has not circulated candidate petitions; consequently, the write-in candidate’s name does not appear on the ballot. This is different than a regular candidate who circulates nomination petitions and obtains signatures from qualified electors (voters) that are submitted to the City Clerk for review by a specific deadline. A regular candidate may also be subject to challenge and have their petitions reviewed by the court. A regular candidate who has submitted nomination petitions and survived the challenge process will have his or her name printed on the ballot.

Q. What paperwork is required to file as a write-in candidate? A.R.S. § 16-312 requires that any person wishing to become a write-in candidate must file:

  1. A nomination paper;
  2. A financial disclosure statement at the time of filing the nomination paper; and
  3. An attestation under penalty of perjury that the write-in candidate is not liable for an aggregation of $1,000 or more in fines, penalties, late fees or administrative or civil judgments, including any interest or costs, in any combination, that have not been fully satisfied at the time of the attempted filing of the nomination paper and the liability arose from failure to comply with or enforcement of the state campaign finance laws. There is an exception if the liability for the fines, penalties, late fees or judgments is being appealed. This attestation is included on the nomination paper.

The City Clerk may not accept the nomination paper of a write-in candidate if the candidate does not file the financial disclosure statement or meet the campaign finance requirement.

Q. Where do I obtain the write-in candidate forms? The City Clerk is the filing officer of the City of Cottonwood and can provide the required forms.

Q. When is the deadline to submit write-in candidate paperwork? All required documentation must be filed with the City Clerk by 5:00 p.m., 40 days prior to the election. For the August 4, 2020 election, the deadline is June 25, 2020.

Q. What are the qualifications to run as a write-in candidate? A write-in candidate must meet the same qualifications as a regular candidate. See A.R.S §§ 16-101, 16-121, 16-311, 16-312. A candidate for local office must:

  1. Be a citizen of the United States.
  2. Be eighteen years of age before the date of the election.
  3. Be a resident of the state twenty-nine days next preceding the election.
  4. Reside in the city or town for one year preceding the election pursuant to A.R.S. § 9-232. 
  5. Be able to write his or her name or make a mark, unless prevented from so doing by physical disability.
  6. Not have been convicted of treason or a felony, unless restored to civil rights.
  7. Not have been adjudicated an incapacitated person as defined in A.R.S. § 14-5101.
  8. Be able to speak, write and read the English language pursuant to A.R.S. § 38-201.
  9. Not be a candidate for more than one public office if the elections for those offices are held on the same day and if the person would be prohibited from serving in the offices simultaneously as prescribed in A.R.S. § 38-296.01.

Q. What disqualifies a person to run as a write-in candidate? A person is not eligible to be a write-in candidate at a PRIMARY election if the person:

  1. Filed a nomination petition for the current primary election for the office sought and failed to provide a sufficient number of valid petition signatures.
  2. Withdrew from the primary election after a challenge was filed.
  3. Be a resident of the state twenty-nine days next preceding the election.
  4. Was removed from or otherwise determined by court order to be ineligible for the primary election ballot.

Q. What happens if a voter writes in a name for a person who did not submit any nomination paperwork? Write-in votes are only counted for those persons who are eligible to run as write-in candidates and have filed the nomination paper and financial disclosure statement. Write-in votes will not be counted for a person who has not filed these documents.

Candidate Qualifications Requirements


A candidate for local office must be a qualified elector at the time of election. Any such candidate, in addition to other requirements, must be 18 years of age or more on or before the election, have resided in the city limits for one year preceding the election, and restored his civil rights if having been convicted of a felony.


Qualified Electors


  • A person who has properly registered to vote, if he is at least 18 years of age, shall be deemed a qualified elector
  • Reside within the corporate limits of the City of Cottonwood, and be registered in the Cottonwood districts.