The traditional date for the Lewes municipal election has come and gone, and five candidates are anxiously awaiting word on when it will be held.
In March, Lewes Mayor and City Council postponed the election until the first Saturday 45 days after social distancing restrictions have been lifted, providing City Manager Ann Marie Townshend with some leeway to determine when to set a date.
Now as the state approaches Phase 1 of reopening, tentatively set for Monday June 1, city officials are pondering when and how an election can be held.
“I think we need to do everything we can within our charter to make absentee voting available and possible,” said Councilman Rob Morgan during council’s May 11 regular meeting.
Townshend said she’s very conscious that most of the city’s election officers are retired and fall into a higher-risk group, and precautionary measures will need to be in place if in-person voting is allowed.
“I want to get the board of election’s thoughts on how to create a very fair, open process with the challenges we have in place,” she said.
The board of elections will meet at 1 p.m., Tuesday, May 19, to discuss options. The meeting will be held virtually and is open to the public. All candidates will have an opportunity to weigh in.
Five people have filed for two seats – two incumbents, Fred Beaufait and Dennis Reardon, and three challengers, Kay Carnahan, Tim Ritzert and Andrew Williams. Each seat carries a three-year term.
The Lewes election is typically held the second Saturday of May.