Becoming a Candidate
The following documents and links provide information on how to become a candidate for public office. If, after reviewing the information, you have further questions, please contact the City Clerk's Office at 837-2511.
As a candidate, you are responsible for becoming familiar with the election and campaign finance requirements that apply to your campaign. You may obtain general information about elections from the Wisconsin Elections Commission website. Further information could be obtained from either the Wisconsin Statutes or from your private attorney. Information you receive from the City Clerk's office may not be interpreted as legal advice or a release from your responsibility to comply with the law.
How to Run for Office Training Video
Campaign Registration Statement
Declaration of Candidacy
The declaration of candidacy must include the candidate's name in the form it is to appear on the official ballot. A candidate may use his or her full legal name or any combination of first name, middle name, initials, or nickname with the last name. No abbreviations or titles are permitted.
A nickname is defined as a familiar or shortened form of a proper name by which an individual is commonly known. Names that are not familiar or shortened forms of proper names, such as "Red," "Skip," or "Lower Taxes" are not permitted. A nickname is a substitute for the candidate's legal name. It is not permissible to add the nickname in quotes between the first and last name. For example, John "Jack" Jones is not acceptable, but Jack Jones is acceptable.
Please note: Your signature as a candidate must be notarized. Notary service is available in the City Clerk's Office.
Notification of Non-Candidacy
The notification of the non-candidacy form is to notify the Clerk's Office and the electorate of an incumbent officeholder's intent to not seek re-election to the same office. Incumbent officeholders who do not intend to seek re-election to the same office should file the notification by the deadline listed on the table above. If an incumbent not seeking re-election files the notification timely, the nomination paper deadline remains the same. If an incumbent does not file this form does not seek re-election, the deadline for filing signatures with the City Clerk for that office is extended 72 hours. The deadline is not extended for the incumbent.
Please note: If an incumbent has a change of mind after filing the notification of non-candidacy, he or she can run for re-election by filing the appropriate ballot access paperwork by the 1st Tuesday in January.
- Download a Campaign Registration Statement from the Wisconsin Elections Commission website.
- File your Campaign Registration Statement with the City Clerk's Office as soon as you decide to become a write-in candidate. Write-in votes are counted for candidates who file a Campaign Registration Statement by the deadline listed on the table above.
- Political signs shall not exceed thirty-two (32) square feet in area.
- Political signs shall not be displayed on any building or grounds that are owned, operated, or maintained by any public agency, or any city-owned post, or traffic control device, or on any pole, post, or appurtenance owned or operated by any utility. Political signs shall be placed only on private property in accordance with Chapter 12, Wisconsin Statutes. Political signs shall not be placed on vacant private property without the consent of the property owner.
- Any illegal signs or unusable signs due to wear, tear, or damage may be removed without notice by the city.