Eagle Co. detective turns in petitions in sheriff bid
Post Independent Staff
Vail, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – By the end of today, it will be determined if Garfield County Sheriff Lou Vallario will have an opponent in the Republican primary.
Doug Winters of Rifle turned in his candidate petition Thursday to run against Vallario in the Aug. 10 primary, according to Clerk and Recorder Jean Alberico.
Winters needed only 69 valid petition signatures to make the ballot. Alberico said that he turned in more than 200 and the clerk and recorder’s office will see today if Winters has enough qualified signatures.
To sign the petition and meet the requirements, a resident must be a registered Garfield County Republican voter. Voters need only to be registered with the party in the county for the last 29 days to qualify for the petition.
The number of required petition signatures is based on 20 percent of the votes cast in Vallario’s 2006 primary, 344. Even though Vallario ran unopposed, it was still the last contested primary, according to state law, Alberico explained.
Alberico says there will be time for non-Republicans to take steps to vote in the Aug. 10 primary. To switch party affiliation, the deadline for registered voters to vote in the primary is July 12.
For unaffiliated registered voters, they can come to the Clerk and Recorder’s Office up until election day to chose an affiliated party.
Only registered Republicans are allowed to vote in the Republican primary.
Voters wanting to vote in the primary need to register 29 days prior to Aug. 10. For the general election, the last day to register to vote is Oct. 4.
If Winters’ petition is confirmed, Alberico says she wants it to be clear that the Aug. 10 primary will be by mail-in ballot only. She says they have a window of July 19-23 to get the ballots into the mail, but she hopes to have them hit the post office by July 19.
Winters, 36, has worked with the Eagle County Sheriff’s Department for more than 13 years and is currently a detective with the department. He has lived in Rifle for the past nine years, where he lives with his wife and two young sons.
Vallario is looking for a third term as county sheriff. He ran unopposed in 2006, and in 2002 he defeated incumbent Democrat Tom Dalessandri in the general election.
Dalessandri will run again this year and is already on the ballot. He will not have an opponent in the primary. He was a two-term sheriff, serving from 1994-2002.