Fayetteville polls open until 7:30 p.m. Tuesday

Staff photo

Polls will be open until 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in Washington County for the 2014 general election.

Aside from a governor, U.S. senator, and several state representatives, local voters will also elect a county judge, and multiple justices of the peace and city council members.

The ballot also includes five statewide issues (see below).

Voters can check their registration information by using the Arkansas Secretary of State’s Voter View website. The site also includes sample ballots for each district.

City Council candidates

In Fayetteville, 13 candidates are vying for seats on the City Council, including Ward 3 Alderman Justin Tennant, who is running unopposed.

In Ward 1, incumbent Adella Gray faces Sonia Davis Gutierrez, a local graphic designer and creative educator; and Paul Phaneuf, a self-employed author, consultant, and activist.

Mark Kinion is seeking re-election in Ward 2 against challengers Joshua Crawford, an IT worker, and Robert Patton, a part-time physician and lawyer.

The Ward 4 race includes six candidates vying for Rhonda Adams’ soon-to-be vacant seat. On the ballot are Ray Boudreaux, retired former director of the Fayetteville Executive Airport; Craig Honchell, an engineer and member of the Planning Commission; D’Andre Jones, a student who works at the Walmart corporate office; John La Tour, a local CPA; Phillip McKnight, a national manager for a manufacturer of outdoor gear; and Robert Williams, a project manager for Milestone Construction Co.

Possible runoff elections

With more than two candidates in each contested race, there is a possibility that a runoff election will be needed to determine a winner.

If a single candidate does not wins a majority of the votes today, the two people with the most votes will square off in a Nov. 25 runoff election unless the leading candidate receives more than 40 percent of the votes and is ahead of the runner-up by 20 percent.

Statewide issues

Tuesday’s ballot also includes five statewide issues.

Issue No. 1 would allow state senators and representatives the right to review and approve state agencies’ (like the Game and Fish Commission) rules before they go into effect. Supporters say the proposal would make sure that state agencies follow the intent of the law. Opponent say the new law would disrupt the necessary separation of powers between legislators and administrators.

Issue No. 2 would only allow petitioners more time to gather signatures for statewide ballot initiatives and referendums if they first turned in at least 75 percent of the required signatures. Supporters say this would help keep petitioners from turning in stacks of fraudulent signatures just to buy more time. Opponent say it would be harder to get a measure on the ballot.

Issue No. 3 would prohibit gifts from lobbyists; create an independent commission to set salaries of state elected officials; establish constitutional law regarding contributions to candidates; lengthen the time required (from one year to two years) before a former legislator could register as a lobbyist; and increase state legislators’ term limits to 16 years.

Issue No. 4 would legalize alcohol sales in the entire state of Arkansas, regardless of whether a particular county is “wet” or “dry.”

Issue No. 5 would raise the state’s minimum wage from $6.25 to $7.50 an hour in 2015; to $8 an hour in 2016, and to $8.50 in 2017.