The Ottumwa Courier

September 27, 2013

Take an interest in elections

Ottumwa Courier

---- — League of Women Voters of Ottumwa strongly supports citizen participation in all phases of self government. LWV of Ottumwa would like to commend the Ottumwa Courier for encouraging citizen participation through publishing editorials and news coverage on the candidates, as well as issues of interest to the electorate and articles on the logistics of voting, such as the location of the polls and the date and the hours the polls are open.

The Courier also regularly publishes contact information for elected officials in city, county, state and national offices on its editorial page, making it possible for citizens to easily express their opinions and concerns to current elected officials, encouraging the two-way communication that is essential to government at all levels.

Successful self-government depends upon citizens taking the responsibility to campaign for and serve at all levels of government, but especially city, county and state levels. The Iowa League of Cities (which is separate from LWV) has created a publication that will help persons who are considering serving as a candidate for any local office by explaining requirements to run as well as each candidate's responsibilities during their campaign. There is also an explanation of the responsibilities of council members, mayors, boards and commissions.

We encourage all candidates for public office as well as any citizen interested in local government and local elections to read the Candidates’ Guide to the Regular City Election (for cities with primaries). It can be found on the Iowa Secretary of State’s website at This document can be printed off at no charge.

Bev VerSteegh

President, LWV, Ottumwa