One of the things too often out of the view of many of us who claim to be political junkies are all of the New Castle County government races. Sure, we pay attention when the high profile seats are up for election — New Castle County Executive and New Castle County Council President — but there are a number of row offices and County Council seats up for the mid-term election that we’ll take a look at. While we’ve been encouraging people to step up to run for GA seats, let’s not forgot that there are vital county seats that Democrats looking for an opportunity to make change on the ground should be considering. The following table is an inventory of the NCCo seats up for election this year plus a list of who is currently running. We’ll update this table as the year goes on.
In NCCo, the Council’s main job each year is to review and pass a budget. A key difference between the County and City Councils is the attention to zoning and land use issues. There’s a fair amount of development pressure in NCCo, as well as pressure from local homeowners for open space. It seems that many people who get involved with County Council do so motivated by land use issues. Most councilpeople run constituent service operations as well. This year, Council seats 1 through 6 are up for election. The rest will be up in 2020. As of now, two GOP held seats have no Dem challenger, so there is an excellent opportunity to step up.
The Row offices can be somewhat opaque to residents until you need these services. Recorder of Deeds collects land transfer taxes and keeps all land transaction records, corporate filings, and financing statements in New Castle County. The Clerk of the Peace manages NCCO marriage licenses and performs marriage ceremonies. The office of the Register of Wills serves as the county probate office and works with families to deal with the paperwork and process of transferring the assets of a deceased person. The Sheriff’s Office serves writs on behalf of Superior Court, Court of Common Pleas, Court of Chancery, and Family Court; serves subpoenas for Department of Justice, Department of Labor, out-of-state courts; and runs the auctions on property seized to service a debt.
The links for each of these Row offices are provided so you can review the qualifications for each office. And from my quick review, the qualifications required are pretty thin.