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Henry, Clayton counties set election qualifying fees

Governments in Henry and Clayton counties have established qualifying fees for individuals who plan to seek elected office in November.

The Henry County Board of Commissioners, on Friday, approved a resolution to set the 2012 fees for 10 offices which are up for re-election this year. Those positions include: the commission chairman, and commissioners in Districts I, II and III, said county spokesperson, Julie Hoover-Ernst.

“District III will only be up for a two-year term, so that they can equalize the number of seats that will be up for re-election during any one election cycle,” Hoover-Ernst said.

Members of the Henry County Board of Education, Henry’s state court judge, probate judge, superior court clerk, sheriff, tax commissioner, coroner and surveyor are also up for re-election this year.

Fees for each position, except surveyor, amount to three percent of the base salary for those roles, said Henry County Director of Elections and Registration Janet Shellnutt. Candidates for commission chairman must pay $1,733.57 in order to qualify, while people seeking commission seats for Districts I, II and III will have to pay $1,318.18, each, to run for those offices.

Individuals who wish to hold seats on the Henry County Board of Education must pay a qualifying fee of $501.36. The largest qualifying amount in Henry is for State Court candidates, who must pay a fee of $4,222.33.

Additional offices for which qualifying fees were set are: $2,533.76, each, for Henry County probate judge, Superior Court clerk and tax commissioner. Sheriff candidates must pay $2,597.16, and those who intend to run for the coroner’s position must pay $1,125.

Earlier this month, commissioners approved a resolution to change the surveyor position from an elected one, to an appointed one. However, Shellnutt said, officials had to set a fee for that position in case the change is not accepted by the U.S. Department of Justice, in time for qualifying to begin. “This is just precautionary,” she said.

Commissioners signed off on a $100 fee for the surveyor position, during Friday’s meeting. The current surveyor, Wayne Powers, did not receive a salary from the county in 2011, said Shellnutt.

The offices of Henry County District Attorney and superior court judges will also appear on the November ballot. But, qualifying fees for those positions are set and published by the office of Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp, according to Friday’s resolution.

The Clayton County Board of Commissioners recently set qualifying fees for offices to be filled during the General Primary and General Elections. State Court Judge candidates will be required to pay $4,481.69, and those seeking to become Clayton’s next solicitor general must pay a $3,212.77 qualifying fee, according to information posted on the Clayton County web site.

The positions of magistrate court judge, tax commissioner and superior court clerk, in Clayton, each have a qualifying fee of $2,750.48. Sheriff candidates in that county must pay $2,842.77, and individuals vying for the Clayton commission chairman position are required to pay $3,607.57.

Other qualifying fees in Clayton are $577.21 for county commission candidates, $340 for school board candidates, and $35 for surveyor candidates.

Qualifying for Henry and Clayton counties will begin May 23, and will end May 25.