FARMINGTON — Candidates throughout San Juan County are gearing up for municipal elections.
Candidate forums for this year's municipal elections in Farmington and Aztec are in February. As of Monday, Bloomfield hasn't scheduled a forum. Election day for the three cities is March 4.
The events are an opportunity for the public to better understand the positions of local candidates, said Linda Benson, treasurer for San Juan Leadership Alumni, the nonprofit organizing Farmington's forum. "It's really meant for the public who may not know these candidates in any form or fashion," she said.
Farmington's forum is from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 13 at the Farmington Public Library's meeting room.
Benson said the group last week mailed invitations to the candidates running in Farmington's two contested races -- the mayor and the District 4 council seat. Because the two races are the only contested campaigns in the city, the other candidates will not partake in the forum, she said.
According to the event's general procedures, each candidate will have up to two minutes to introduce himself or herself and another two minutes to reply to each question. In the forum's second half, each candidate can ask a question of an opponent. The public can submit questions, too. Candidates will have two minutes for closing statements.
San Juan Leadership Alumni is drafting questions for the forum, Benson said, and KOB-TV Reporter Devin Neeley will moderate.
The Aztec Chamber of Commerce has its candidate forum from 7 to 9 p.m. on Feb. 4 at the Aztec Civic Center, said Amanda Hawks, chamber treasurer. She said KSJE Radio General Manager Scott Michlin will moderate the event.
In Farmington, nine candidates are running for seats on city council and for municipal judges.
Tommy Roberts, the incumbent, and Matt Dodson are running for mayor. Nate Duckett and Debra Mayeux are running for the District 4 council seat. Incumbent Councilor Gayla McCulloch is running uncontested for the District 3 council seat. Bill Liese and Rena Scott are running for municipal judge. Bill Standley and James Rowland are running for part-time municipal judge.
Four candidates are running for commission seats in Aztec.
Sally Burbridge, the current mayor, is running against Joe Hubbard for the District 2 seat. Katee McClure is running uncontested for the District 4 seat, and Sheri Rogers is running also uncontested for the District 5 seat.
Commissioners Eugene Current and Jim Crowley aren't seeking re-election.
Once commissioners are elected, the body will vote at its meeting following the election to appoint a new mayor.
In Bloomfield, five candidates are vying for offices.
Scott Eckstein, the current mayor, is running unopposed for a third mayoral term. DeLaws Lindsay and incumbent J. Elwin Roark are running uncontested for two open council seats.
Kristi Phillips and incumbent Marlon Maloy are competing for municipal judge.