With the 2021 Greensboro City Council primary election delayed until the statewide primary on March 8, 2022, the ballot is likely to be long.

At this point nobody knows exactly how long the ballot will be for a number of reasons.

One is that not all races will have primaries, and another is that the Greensboro City Council can put bonds on the ballot for either the primary on March 8, the City Council general election (which at this point could be held either in April or May), or the statewide general election in November 2022.  Also, the Guilford County Board of Commissioners is considering placing a school bond on the ballot.

It is not uncommon for voters to go to the polls not knowing all the races that are up for election but, in March, even voters that pay attention are likely to be surprised when they look at their ballot.

By state law the races for the five council district seats were delayed until March and presumably April.  But it was action by the City Council that delayed the races for the three at-large City Council seats and the mayor until March.  The City Council had the option of holding a split election with the races for the at-large councilmembers and mayor being held in October and November, and the five district City Council seats in March and April or May, but voted to hold one election. 

So the City Council primaries will be joined by the primaries for Guilford County Board of Commissioners, Guilford County Board of Education, Guilford County sheriff, Guilford County district attorney, state House of Representative and state Senate, Congress, one US Senate race, plus judicial races   It is completely unknown at this time how many of those races will have primaries.

Adding to the overall confusion of the election is that the City Council districts, Guilford County Board of Commissioner districts, Guilford County Board of Education districts, state House districts, state Senate districts and the congressional districts may all be redrawn between when the Census figures are finally released in September and filing for the election, which begins in December.

And, as if another variable is needed, if the City Council does not complete its redistricting by Nov. 17, the filing for the City Council election will be delayed until January.