For those thinking about running for office in the 2022 election, the time for thinking is over and the time for making a decision is here.

Filing for the May 17 primary closes at noon on Friday, March 4 and for procrastinators, noon means noon and not 12:01 p.m. Potential candidates have been known to race into the Board of Elections Office minutes after the deadline, only to find that they are too late to file.

This is most likely the longest filing period in the history of North Carolina since it opened on Monday, Dec. 6 2021 and is closing on Friday, March 4, 2022.  However, during most of that time filing was suspended.  The North Carolina Supreme Court suspended filing on the evening of Wednesday, Dec. 8 2021 and also postponed the primary that had been set for Tuesday, March 8 to Tuesday, May 17.

When filing was suspended no date to reopen filing was set, but the courts later set the date for filing to reopen on Thursday, Feb. 24 and close on Friday, March 4.

The May 17 primary includes the primaries for the Greensboro City Council races, primaries that were originally scheduled for Oct. 5, 2021 and were first delayed because the release of the Census data required for redistricting was delayed by COVID-19 restrictions.

The terms of the current members of the City Council were supposed to expire in December, but have been extended until after the City Council general election which is now set for Tuesday, July 26.  Having an election at the end of July is not ideal, but it is far superior to the alternative which was Tuesday, July 5.

City Council races are nonpartisan and there will only be primaries in the mayoral and district city council races if more than two candidates file and in the at large race if more than six candidates file.

In the mayoral and district City Council races the top two finishers regardless of political affiliation will be on the ballot for the general election.  In the at large City Council race the top six finishers will be on the general election ballot.  The at large City Council primary is a rare election where finishing sixth is a win.