Only one candidate, Derek Duke, signed up and paid the fee Monday during the first day of qualifying for the May 22 special election to Statesboro City Council in District 5.
Duke, a decorated Air Force veteran and retired airline pilot, has been a resident of the district and the city for 40 years.
Qualifying continues Tuesday from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. and Wednesday from 8 a.m. until noon, when it ends, in the city clerk's office at City Hall, 50 E. Main St. The candidate fee is $227.
One other person, real estate agent Ashley Padgett, had inquired previously about qualifying as a candidate. Although Padgett has been a Statesboro resident for more than 15 years, he moved into District 5 to his current home just last fall. City Clerk Sue Starling said she did not think Padgett could qualify since he previously told her he closed on the purchase of the home at the end of November. Six months prior to the election date is the minimum required time of residence in the district.
"He would have to show proof that he was in his house no later than November the 21st, because November 21st to May 21st is exactly six months," Starling said.
Padgett said last week that if he did not qualify for this special election, he will look into running next year. District 5 voters will elect a council member to a full four-year term in the November 2019 regular city election.
This May's special election will fill the unexpired term, ending Dec. 31, 2019, of former council member Travis Chance, who resigned earlier this month and is now a candidate for county commissioner. Of course, the special election winner will then be an incumbent and eligible to seek a full term.