Election guide pride

I’m proud of the election guides we’re creating in print and online this month for our area’s upcoming municipal elections.

We’ve been doing a lot of coverage leading up to the election: how to file to run, who filed to run, party caucuses and conventions to narrow candidates, changes in voting process and locations, etc.

Knowing we had limited time and resources to create in-depth coverage of each candidate and race, we sent the same nine questions to all candidates across all races:

  1. What are two specific reasons you decided to run for this office? (100 words or less.)
  2. If elected/re-elected, what are your top three priorities for your time in office? (150 words or less.)
  3. What are two specific skills you would bring to the office to benefit constituents, if elected/re-elected? (100 words or less.)
  4. What’s one aspect of the government body you’re seeking to join or lead that you think is working well and should continue? (100 words or less.)
  5. What’s one aspect of the body you’re seeking to join or lead that you think needs to change, and what specific action(s) would you pursue to change it? (100 words or less.)
  6. Will you accept the results of the election process even if you are not elected/re-elected? (50 words or less.)
  7. Beyond encouraging attendance at public meetings, how do you plan to involve residents in decision making processes that the office you seek is a part of? (100 words or less.)
  8. If you received a $5 million grant to improve our community any way you wanted, what would you do with it and why? (150 words or less.)
  9. Any other comments you’d like to share about your candidacy? (150 words or less.)

In print, our reporter and layout editor Mike came up with a nice package that presents the basics about each race and candidate, along with their responses:

Online, we’ve been building out an election guide that pulls together candidate profiles with basics about registering, voting, all of our past reporting, links to helpful resources, and candidate forums being hosted by our community access television station.

The hope is to be a one-stop resource for someone doing their research and preparation for voting.

The first edition with the guide featured goes out this week, so we’ll see what kind of feedback we get!

Chris Hardie is a journalist, newspaper publisher, software developer and entrepreneur based in Indiana, USA. Read more from Chris on this site, learn more on his personal website, subscribe for updates or follow Chris on Mastodon.

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