Who's running for local races on Election Day - part 4

Louise Oleson
DLJ Editor
Jeff Frith

Before you know it, it will be November and we’ll be voting on Election Day, November 3, 2020. Besides the national races, like who will serve as President and Vice President for the next four years, there are some local races to participate in. There are three seats up for election in the Ramsey County Commission, who will serve as head of ND Soil Conservation and adoption (or rejection) of the Home Rule Charter for Ramsey County will all be on this year’s ballot.

Ramsey County Commission race: Jeff Frith

Jeff Frith is 55 years old and is married to Shari. He says, “We'll celebrate 30 years at the end of September.

“We have one son, Spencer, who just graduated from LRSC and is continuing his education at UND this fall.

“I am a life-long, 4th generation, Devils Lake/Ramsey County resident.

“I graduated from Devils Lake Central High (1983) and Lake Region State, although I think it was called Community College (LRCC) at the time (1986).

“I am completing my first term as a county commissioner, and it is something that I genuinely enjoy, I find it interesting, challenging, and very rewarding serving a community that I love and has given my family and me so many fantastic opportunities. I feel that I bring a lot of experience, to the commission from my personal and professional endeavors, as well as the knowledge gained by serving as a commissioner.

“The lake will always be a significant issue in our region and present a challenge for residents and officials. Whether there is too much water or not enough I feel that I bring a lot of knowledge to the table regarding the problems that it presents and potential solutions.

“Another challenge that I foresee for the residents of the county would be the continued increases in operations of the law enforcement center keeping the center at a high level that is needed all the while finding various ways to make it affordable to the residents of the county.

“Roads will always be an issue, ensuring that they are in the best possible condition for the safety of those that rely on them for their transportation needs. The loss of the state's "Prairie Dog" funds, or at least until oil revenues improve, was a significant hit for township and county roads. Those funds would have provided a much-needed boost to the local governments responsible for the maintenance of roads.

“As a commissioner, I hope that the decisions we make today will benefit the residents of the county for years to come. I strive to make the county a better place to live for the residents today and for generations yet to come.

“As a commissioner, I currently hold the portfolio for States Attorney and the County Extension offices. I also serve on the Airport Authority and represent the county on the Chamber of Commerce Board.”

Frith’s professional involvements include the following: Devils Lake Basin representative on the Devils Lake Outlets Advisory Committee 2nd Vice-President, North Dakota Water Users Association Member of North Dakota Aquatic Invasive Species Committee Member of North Dakota Water Education Foundation

His community involvements include: Served on the Devils Lake School board for six years Served over ten years on the Ramsey County Fair Board Volunteer 4-H & Devils Lake High School Clay Target (shotgun) Coach.

The election

According to the Ramsey County Auditor’s Office, as it stands today, there will be both absentee voting and in person voting for this election.

In person voting will take place in the Memorial Building, as has been done normally for elections, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. on election day, Nov. 3, provided conditions allow for in person voting. The Governor of North Dakota and/or the Secretary of State would make that call, depending on the risks to voters and election workers.

If you filled out a request to have all ballots sent to you for voting absentee, then you should be getting one through the U.S. Postal Service sometime the first part of October. You have until Nov. 2 to get that ballot filled out and mailed in, it must be postmarked by but no later than Nov. 2.

You could also drop your absentee ballot by the Ramsey County Auditor’s Office no later than 5 p.m. on Nov. 2.

On Sept. 14 a notice will be sent out from the county to all those who did not correctly request absentee ballots earlier in the year, asking if voters would like to vote that way this time.

You could also bring your absentee ballot in to the Auditor’s Office and vote right there, if for some reason you didn’t trust the Post Office with your ballot. That would have to be done before election day, however.

If you put your ballot away and for some reason don’t get it filled out and submitted prior to 5 p.m. on Nov. 2, then it might be better for you to shred it and go to vote in person on Nov. 3, instead. Absentee ballots will not be accepted to be handed in on Nov. 3. Please, do NOT vote more than once!

Who can vote?

If you have been a Ramsey County resident for at least 30 days, you are eligible to vote in Ramsey County. North Dakota does not require voter registration. However, voters are asked to bring proof of residence with them if this is the first time they’ve voted in ND. College students attending LRSC, for example, could vote in Ramsey County, if they are U.S. citizens and if they have proof they have lived in the county for 30 days, however, they cannot then vote in their home cities or counties, if they vote in Ramsey County. Be sure to bring a photo ID with you that has your current residential address on it.

Proof of residence can be made by providing a bill from a utility company that bears your name and present residential address on it.

Election workers ask, too, that you please wear a mask and practice social distancing if you come to vote in person.

Contact Louise Oleson with any comments at loleson@devilslakejournal.com