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Qualifying Procedures

Candidates must be, at all times, qualified electors of the City, must have been a full-time resident for at least six months in the district he/she wishes to represent prior to qualifying and may not hold any other elective office.

To become a filed candidate for a local municipal office, the following forms must be submitted to the Filing Officer:  The Filing Officer for the City of Punta Gorda is the City Clerk.

  • Form DS-DE 9, provides for an appointment of Campaign Treasurer and Designation of Campaign Depository.  This form must be filed before opening a campaign account.  No contributions are to be received and no expenditures are to be made before filing. (106.021(1) F.S.)
  • Form DS-DE 84  Statement of Candidate, acknowledges the individual has been provided access to read and understand the requirements of Chapter 106, Florida Statutes (election laws related to campaign finance) and must be filed within ten days of filing the DS-DE 9 (106.023 F.S.)

To become a qualified candidate, you must be a "filed candidate" and complete the following:

  • File Form DS-DE 302NP, Candidate Oath - Nonpartisan Office (99.021 F.S.)
  • File Form 1 - Financial Disclosure (99.061(4) & 112.3145, F.S)
  • Pay an election assessment equal to 1% of the annual salary of the office being sought (must be paid prior to the end of the qualifying period) (99.093(1) F.S.).
  • During the qualifying period obtain the signatures on the prescribed petition form of at least 25, but not more than 50, registered voters who reside within the district for which election is sought (City Charter).

All qualified candidates must meet specific legal requirements regarding campaign advertising and campaign financing.  For more information on campaign signage, see the Memo to Candidates Regarding Political or Campaign Signage.

Periodic campaign finance reports must be filed with the Filing Officer as outlined in Chapter 106.07, Florida Statutes. Candidates should pay close attention to the dates that Treasurer's Reports (Forms DS-DE 12, DS-DE 13 and DS-DE 14) are due and be sure to turn them in on time. 

A full understanding of the election process is the responsibility of the candidate.  The information contained herein is just a brief overview.  Candidates should become familiar with the Florida Election Code, City Charter and City ordinances.

Candidate Forms and Information

Candidate forms are available at the City Clerk's Office.

Further information is available from the Florida Division of Elections.


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