Fayetteville Considers Scrapping Primaries

Jan 10, 2012

Municipal primary elections could be on the chopping block in Fayetteville. The City Council has voted to explore the idea of eliminating the biennial primaries, and their 84-thousand dollar price tag. Fayetteville's mayor is among those who've raised concerns about the potential change. The mayor wonders if ditching the primaries could unfairly benefit incumbents. But Councilman D.J. Haire, who proposed the measure, doesn't share that worry.

D.J. Haire: You already have the name recognition and all the other pluses that you have by being a sitting elected official. I don't see how you take away from that if you still have the primary...you still have just as much as you would if you only had the one election.

Haire hopes consolidating into one election might raise Fayetteville's low voter turnout. It's about 5 percent for primaries. The city would join the majority of municipalities in the state which do not hold primaries for local offices.