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Durham gets election cycling Thursday

According to Mike Ashe, Durham County's elections director, "a new election cycle" gets started tomorrow.

Yes, we just had an election. In Durham, though, there's an election every year, and Ashe is hosting a lunchtime get-together for political-party chairpeople, their colleagues and the board of elections staff, to talk about appointing precinct officials.

"We are all working together to provide fair and honest elections," Ashe said in an emailed invitation to the press.

Durham voters are electing a mayor and three City Council members this fall. So far, the only candidate to make an official announcement is mayoral hopeful Steven Williams.

However, incumbent Mayor Bill Bell has indicated he plans to run for a fifth two-year term; incumbent council members Cora Cole-McFadden and Howard Clement have also said they will stand for re-election for their Ward 1 and 2 seats and Ward 3 incumbent Mike Woodard shows no sign of planning to quit after a single term.

Candidate filing opens at noon July 3 and closes at noon July 17. The primary election is Oct. 6 and general election Nov. 3.

Williams challenging Bell for mayor

Steven Williams, who challenged incumbent Bill Bell for Durham's mayoralty in 2005, is going to try again, according to an announcement from his campaign committee.
Bell has said he intends to stand for re-election, though he has made no official announcement.
Williams, a 1992 graduate of Hillside High School, makes his announcement official Sunday at 3 p.m. at the CCB Plaza downtown. His campaign slogan is "Community First."
Filing for the 2009 city election opens at noon July 3.
According to his Facebook page, Williams is a traffic manager for Sensus Metering Systems in Raleigh.
Williams filed as a candidate for mayor, but withdrew before the primary four years ago. According to his campaign, he grew up i the Walltown neighborhood near Northgate Mall, attended St. Augustine's College in Raleigh on a track scholarshp and earned a bachelor's degree there in international business.
He raises money for the Durham Eagles youth football team and recently went on a mission trip to Haiti.
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