PO Box 300, Dade City, FL 33526  • (800) 851-8754  • OFFICE HOURS: M-F 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Becoming a Candidate


What happens first?

Form DS-DE 9, Appointment of Campaign Treasurer and Designation of Campaign Depository for Candidates is the first document that must be filed with the filing officer to become a candidate. At the same time, the candidate must designate the office for which he or she is running. A candidate can appoint a campaign treasurer and designate a campaign depository at any time, but no later than the date the candidate qualifies for office.

Nothing prohibits a person from announcing their intention to become a candidate prior to filing Form DS-DE 9, as long as NO bank account is open, NO contributions are received, NO expenditures are made, and NO signatures are obtained on a candidate petition.

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What is a Candidate?

A candidate is defined in 97.021(6), Florida Statues, as any person to whom any one or more of the following applies:

  • Any person who seeks to qualify for nomination or election by means of a petitioning process;
  • Any person who seeks to qualify for election as a write-in candidate;
  • Any person who receives contributions or makes expenditures or gives his or her consent for any other person to receive contributions or make expenditures with a view to bringing about his or her nomination or election to, or retention in, public office;
  • Any person who appoints a treasurer and designates a primary depository; or
  • Any person who files qualification papers and subscribes to a candidate's oath as required by law.
However, this definition does not include any candidate for a political party executive committee.


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Who can be a Candidate?

  • Anyone meeting residency and registration requirements in accordance with Florida Statutes;
  • Anyone who is not a registered member of another political party other than the one under which they are filing/qualifying;
  • Anyone who has not been a candidate for nomination for any other political party for a period of 365 days before the beginning of qualifying.
NOTE...
  • County Commission candidates must reside in the district for which they are qualifying at the time of being elected to office;
  • School Board candidates must reside in the district for which they are qualifying at the time of qualifying;
  • If required, one's current position or office must be resigned under the "resigned to run" law. The written resignation must be submitted at least 10 days prior to the first day of qualifying for the office he/she intends to seek (99.012(3), Florida Statutes).

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When do I announce my candidacy?

  • Candidacy may be announced at any time;
  • Must file Appointment of Campaign Treasurer and Designation of Campaign Depository (Form DS-DE 9) with the Supervisor of Elections' office BEFORE any contributions are accepted or expenditures are made (106.021, Florida Statutes);*
  • Must file a Statement of Candidate (Form DS-DE 84) within ten (10) days of filing the Appointment of Campaign Treasurer and Designation of Campaign Depository (106.023, Florida Statutes).*

* Excluding Special District candidates who do not intend to collect or expend campaign funds.

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Is it possible to run for a different office after I become a candidate?

Yes, permitted under 106.021(1)(a), Florida Statutes, you may change your mind and run for a different office after becoming a candidate, providing that you:

  • File a new Appointment of Campaign Treasurer and Designation of Campaign Depository, designating the new office;
  • Within 15 days of the new appointment, notify, in writing, all contributors and offer to return their contributions pro rata. The Request for Return of Contributions (Form DS-DE 86) may be used for such purpose;
  • If, after 30 days from this notice, the contributor has not requested his contribution to be returned, you may use the funds in the campaign for your newly designated office.

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Which County Officials are to be elected in 2018?

  • County Commissioner, District 2
  • County Commissioner, District 4
  • County Court Judge, Group 1
  • ​County Court Judge, Group 2
  • County Court Judge, Group 3
  • County Court Judge, Group 6
  • County Court Judge, Group 7
  • School Board Member, District 1
  • School Board Member, District 3
  • School Board Member, District 5

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Which Special Districts Officials are to be elected in 2018?

  • Pasco County Mosquito Control District, Seats 2
  • Lake Padgett Estates Independent Special District
  • Ballantrae Community Development District
  • Bridgewater Community Development District
  • Chapel Creek Community Development District
  • Concord Station Community Development District
  • Connerton West Community Development District
  • Country Walk Community Development District
  • Dupree Lakes Community Development District
  • Heritage Pines Community Development District
  • Heritage Springs Community Development District
  • Highland Lakes Community Development District
  • Hillcrest Preserve Community Development District
  • Lake Bernadette Community Development District
  • Lakeshore Ranch Community Development District
  • Lakeside Community Development District
  • Lexington Oaks Community Development District
  • Longleaf Community Development District
  • Meadow Pointe Community Development District
  • Meadow Pointe II Community Development District
  • Meadow Pointe III Community Development District
  • Meadow Pointe IV Community Development District
  • New River Community Development District
  • Northwood Community Development District
  • Oak Creek Community Development District
  • Oakstead Community Development District
  • Preserve at Wilderness Lake Community Development District
  • Riverwood Estates Community Development District
  • Seven Oaks Community Development District
  • Summit View Community Development District
  • Suncoast Community Development District
  • Talavera Community Development District
  • Terra Bella Community Development District
  • The Groves Community Development District
  • Valley Oaks Community Development District
  • Verandahs Community Development District
  • WaterGrass I Community Development District
  • Waters Edge Community Development District
  • Wiregrass Community Development District
  • Zephyr Ridge Community Development District

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The 2017/2018 Election Dates:

Election
Book Closing Date
Date of Election
 
Municipal March 13, 2017
April 11, 2017
 
Municipal
March 12, 2018
April 10, 2018
 
Primary*
July 30,2018 August 28, 2018
 
General
October 9, 2018
November 6, 2018
 

      *subject to change

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