Local election year officially begins - filing deadline March 1 - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Local election year officially begins - filing deadline March 1

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Amarillo, TX -- While President Obama reshuffles his cabinet in Washington, we may soon see a changing-of-the-guard of our own right here in Amarillo.

Today is the first day to file as a candidate for city commissioner, and so far, the only names on the ballot are current commissioners. But our commissioners tell me they welcome any challengers as part of the democratic process.

Since 1913, Amarillo has elected its city commissioners to two-year terms every other year.   And just about anyone can run for office - which commissioners say is good for Amarillo and good for democracy.

"Get involved," urges Commissioner Jim Simms.  "I mean, this is America. Competition helps us all. So I would encourage people to get involved."

The commission makes city-wide decisions involving everything from zoning codes to tax rates and everything in between.

"For the last two years the City Commission has taken some really important steps," says Commissioner Ellen Robertson-Green.  "We've invested in law enforcement, we've invested in infrastructure, we've secured water rights from the part of the panhandle where there's more water than anyplace else."

This year's filing deadline is March 1st, and the elections are slated for May 14th.

For more on how you can run, follow the link attached to this story.