How to Become a Candidate for Public Office in Campbell County, Virginia

How to Become a Candidate for Public Office in Campbell County, Virginia

The decision to seek election to public office is a serious commitment indeed, and the process for following through with that commitment can seem very daunting as well. All of the information is available on the Virginia Department of Elections (VA DOE) website, but that can seem intimidating, too. Fortunately, the folks at our Campbell County Registrar’s Office can help you navigate through all the process and paperwork. Hopefully, the following notes can also be of help. The process becomes a bit clearer if you know where to look for the information

Launch Point

The VA DOE Candidate/PAC Info landing page is a good place to start: https://www.elections.virginia.gov/candidatepac-info/

Becoming a Candidate

This page (https://www.elections.virginia.gov/candidatepac-info/becoming-a-candidate/) defines the qualifications and requirements that a candidate must meet to seek office, then provides a series of Instructions for the various offices that are up for election in 2023.

Step By Step Information

Perhaps the best single source for understanding the process of becoming a candidate and campaigning for office can be found in one of the two Candidate Bulletins that can be accessed from the Candidate/PAC landing page.

• Consult this document if you are interested in campaigning for an office in the Virginia General Assembly (House of Delegates or State Senate): https://www.elections.virginia.gov/media/candidatesandpacs/2023-candidate-bulletins/2023-11-07_Gen_Bulletin_HoD_SoV.pdf

• Consult this document if you are interested in campaigning for election to the Board of Supervisors, School Board, or one of our Constitutional Offices (Sheriff, Treasurer, Clerk of Court, Commonwealth’s Attorney, and Commissioner of Revenue): https://www.elections.virginia.gov/media/candidatesandpacs/2023-candidate-bulletins/2023-11-07_Gen_Bulletin_Local_Offices.pdf

Required Forms

Candidates for all offices must file the applicable Certificate of Candidate Qualification form, Declaration of Candidacy form with Petition(s) of Qualified Voters, Statement of Economic Interests, and Campaign Finance Reporting forms (including Statement of Organization). Requirements and forms differ somewhat for candidates seeking election to county offices (Board of Supervisors, School Board, Constitutional Officers, etc) and those seeking election to the General Assembly (House of Delegates and State Senate). You will find links to the necessary forms with Local Offices at the top and Legislative Offices near the middle of this page: https://www.elections.virginia.gov/candidatepac-info/candidate-forms/

Campaign Finance Reporting

All but the bottom couple remaining links on the Candidate/PAC info page are devoted to campaign finance and campaign finance reporting. Read all of the information accessed via these links carefully and perform them meticulously. You will find a helpful document that defines the start and end of a series of time periods and the filing deadline for reporting activity for each of these periods. Access this chart at https://www.elections.virginia.gov/media/formswarehouse/campaign-finance/2023/2023-Candidate-Reporting-Deadlines.pdf

Note that all contributions and expenditures must be reported online, using the COMET Tracking System. Access this page to register for access: https://cf.elections.virginia.gov/Account/LogOn

Exemption from Reporting Requirements

In certain cases, a candidate or campaign may qualify to be exempted from Finance Reporting requirements. For example, if running unopposed, a candidate may choose not to accept contributions or to make any campaign expenditures. The conditions and rules for attaining this exemption are clearly defined on the “Request for Exemption From Reporting Requirements” form accessed here: https://www.elections.virginia.gov/media/formswarehouse/campaign-finance/2018/campaignfinance/candidate/Cidate_Exemption_Request-TLA-7_9_2019.pdf