Elections in Great Falls for 2022: Everything You Need to Know

For current requirements to vote in Montana, click here.

School Board Trustee Election

There are currently three seats for three-year terms on the District School Board that are expiring, and one seat for a one-year term for someone who will serve out the rest of the late Jan Cahill’s term. Individuals who are interested in running must file a DECLARATION OF INTENT AND OATH OF CANDIDACY FOR TRUSTEE CANDIDATES with the County Elections Office. This office is located at 325 2nd Ave North, Great Falls. The filing date to do this is December 9, 2021 through March 24, 2022. Close of Write-in filing is March 31, 2022. Candidates must report campaign expenditures to the Montana Commissioner of Political Practices.

The Board of Trustees for School District No. 1 & A, Cascade County, State of Montana, will hold the Annual Regular School Election on Tuesday, May 3, 2022. The election will be conducted by: Mail Ballot. You can vote at the County Elections Office downtown on the day of the election if you are a registered voter in the district. The ballots are being sent out on April 18, 2022. Regular voter registration for this election closes April 4, 2022, and close of late registration ends at noon on May 2, 2022, the day before the election. As of the date of this article, there are no levy issues on the ballot this year. This is a non-partisan race.

Special Purpose District Elections

Elections in special purpose districts are being held on the same date as the school board election, May 3, 2022. This includes irrigation, rural fire, drainage districts, etc. An election for Transit Board, which provides bus service for Great Falls and Black Eagle, will also be held for two positions. The filing for these special elections ends on February 7, 2022. Close of Write-in filing ends February 28, 2022. Regular voter registration for this election closes April 4, 2022, and close of late registration ends at noon on May 2, 2022, the day before the election. Mail ballots will be sent April 18, 2022. These are non-partisan races.

Federal, State and County Primary Election

Filing for state-wide positions started on January 13, 2022 at the Montana Secretary of State’s office and website. You can file here. Local candidates (city/county) file at the County Elections Office. Filing ends on March 14, 2022. Close of Write-in filing ends April 4, 2022. Regular voter registration for this election closes May 9, 2022, and close of late registration ends at noon on June 6, 2022, the day before the election. Mail ballots will be sent out on May 13, 2022. The election will be June 7, 2022. Polls will be open.

From the County Elections Office website:

At the Primary election, voters nominate candidates from a political party to run in the November General election for federal, state, and county offices. 

Montana has an “Open Primary” system. This means:

√ You do not register to vote with a political party.

√ You get to choose which party’s primary you want to nominate candidates from; and

√ Your choice is secret.

√ You are still limited to voting in ONE party’s primary election. 

Here’s how it works: Absentee voters will be sent all political party ballots, and choose one to vote and return in their ballot secrecy envelope. The ballot secrecy envelope is returned in an outer envelope that is signed by the voter. It is important to only vote ONE party ballot. If you return two voted party ballots in your secrecy envelope, they will be rejected.

Polling place voters will also be provided with all party ballots, and must choose one to vote. Election judges at the polls will instruct voters to place their voted ballot in a separate secrecy sleeve from their unvoted ballots. The judges will deposit the voted ballot in the ballot box, and the unvoted ballots in a separate container. Because the ballots are placed in secrecy sleeves, the judges do not know which party ballot the elector voted.

Whether you vote absentee or at the polls, there is no record of which party ballot you voted.

Remember, you can only nominate candidates from ONE political party. We hear from voters who have questions like, “I want to vote to nominate someone for Senator from the Democratic party, and to nominate someone for Representative from the Republican party – how can I do that?” This is not possible. Our Open Primary system allows you to choose which party’s primary to vote in without pre-registering with that party. You must still choose one party’s primary to vote in.

Though you may only nominate candidates from one political party in the Primary, at the November General election you may vote for candidates from different political parties if you wish.

Candidates should refer to the Commissioner of Political Practices for candidate financial reporting information and forms to ensure their name appear on the ballot.

General Election

Party nominees from the June primary election for federal, state and county races are presented at the general election, held on November 8, 2022. A variety of ballot issues and non-partisan races are also presented. The close of registration for this election is October 11, 2022. Close of Write-in filing for the general election is September 6, 2022. (Regular filing open of January 13, 2022 and close of filing on March 14, 2022 applies to the primary and subsequent general election). Mail ballots will be sent out on October 14, 2022. The last day to register for late voter registration is noon on November 7, 2022. Polls will be open.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the Elections Office at 406-454-6803.

To see the list of candidates (legislative and non-legislative) that are currently filed for federal or state-wide races for the primary/general election, click here.

Categories: Elections

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