Running for office? Get out the checkbook

Posted by Scott Saxton email

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - When it comes to running for elected office, you have to pay to play.  Filing fees in our region range anywhere from a mere $6 to $1740.

On the low end of that scale is a seat on the Pender County Board of Education, which will cost you about the same as an Extra Value Meal at your favorite fast food establishment.

On the high end of the scale, as you might imagine, is a run for federal office.  United States Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) will put that $1740 toward a run for re-election this month.  Same story for Congressman Mike McIntyre (D-NC) when he files to run another term in the House of Representatives.  All challengers will have to do the same.

Monday marks the beginning of the filing period for elected office in North Carolina.  Filing fees are set by local and state governing bodies.  The fees are typically based on a fraction of the salary for the office, around 1%.

A run for the NC Senate or NC House of Representatives will cost you the same -- $207.

However, not all offices are created equal.  If you want to run for sheriff in New Hanover County, you'll have to put up $1100, compared to $700 for neighboring Brunswick and Pender Counties.  In Columbus County, it'll cost you $677.

While you'll pay $108 to throw your hat in the ring for a seat on the New Hanover County Board of Education, it'll cost you only $87 in Brunswick County and $61 in Columbus County.

In many counties, one of the most expensive offices to run for is the one with the least amount of public (or media) exposure -- Clerk of Court.  You'll have to put up $1025 to run for the office in New Hanover County, $925 in Brunswick County and $824 in Pender and Columbus Counties.

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