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Primary election is today. Here’s what you need to know

Ballots for today’s primary election must be dropped off by 7 p.m.
Montezuma County Commission District 1 will be decided; voters will cast votes for candidates in state and national races

The primary election is today, so don’t forget to turn in your ballot by 7 p.m.

The Journal will update results online as they arrive.

Ballots can be dropped off at the following official ballot box locations:

  • Montezuma County Clerk’s Office, 140 W. Main St., Suite 1.
  • Cortez City Hall, 123 E. Roger Smith Ave.
  • Mancos Town Hall, 117 N. Main St.
  • Dolores Town Hall, 420 Central Ave.
  • Lewis Arriola (Cox Conoco), 18794 U.S. Highway 491.
  • Towaoc, Ute Mountain Ute Tribal Complex, 124 Mike Wash Road.

Primary elections are where political parties choose which candidate will be on the November general election ballot. Unaffiliated voters are allowed to cast votes in one of the political party ballots.

There is only one contested race in Montezuma County.

Three Republican candidates are running for the District 1 seat of the Montezuma County Board of County Commissioners.

The candidates are incumbent Jim Candelaria and challengers Tim Lanier and Liz Tozer.

Aug 16, 2022
Candidates for Montezuma County commission seat present views

Because no other candidate is running, the winner in today’s Republican primary election for county commissioner will be alone on the November ballot and will serve a four-year term.

Republican Montezuma County Commissioner Gerald Koppenhaffer is running unopposed for the District 3 seat and will move on to the November ballot.

Republicans running for reelection to Montezuma County offices include Sheriff Steve Nowlin, Clerk and Recorder Kim Percell, Treasurer Ellen Black and Coroner George Deavers. They are all running unopposed but could be challenged if a candidate successfully petitions onto the November ballot.

Montezuma County Deputy Clerks Kelly Codner and Jerri Frizzell bring in ballots to be counted. (Jim Mimiaga/The Journal)

There is no Democrat running for any county office. There is no Republican or Democrat candidate for county surveyor.

On the state and national level, county Democrats, Republicans and unaffiliated voters will choose candidates for the November ballot for the offices of U.S. senator, state Secretary of State, U.S. Congressional District 3, governor, state Treasurer, Attorney General, Colorado Board of Education, and State Representative Districts 58 and 59.

Montezuma County Clerk and Recorder Kim Percell said the office has been busy with voters dropping off ballots and conducting election business. She expects the usual surge of voters between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m.

Of the 18,398 ballots mailed out, 6,714 had been returned as of 1 p.m., a 36% voter turnout.

Percell said ballots are being processed by six election judges . When polls close, election officials will collect the boxes from the voting centers around the county and deliver them to the election judges for processing.

The first preliminary county results will be released around 7:30 p.m., Percell said, and be posted on the Secretary of State website.

New this year is the Montezuma County Sheriff’s office has posted deputy at the county annex complex, which include the offices of clerk and recorder, assessor, and treasurer.