Government

ON Election Office preparing for 2020 general election

The Osage Nation Election Office is preparing for the upcoming 2020 general election on June 1 in Pawhuska with advertising important dates and information for Osage voters and candidates who will be seeking office starting in February.

Osages interested in running for the Seventh ON Congress may file for candidacy with the Election Office in Pawhuska starting Feb. 4 and may do so until the close of business on March 2, said Election Supervisor Alexis Rencountre.

Six seats on the 12-member Osage Congress will open and each individual term lasts four years. In addition to filing for office, all Congressional candidates will be subject to ON election law and rules/ regulations, which include requiring candidates to submit two campaign finance reporting statements before and after the election.

Also in addition to the June 1 election, there will be two days of early voting on May 29-30 at the ON Election Office, 608 Kihekah, in Pawhuska, Rencountre said.

At the Election Board’s Jan. 14 meeting, Congresswoman Alice Goodfox said she is also getting questions on election and candidate information from both constituents and those interesting in running for office.

Rencountre said she would be in touch with the ON Museum to discuss having the polling place in the historic building on the Osage government campus as was done in the 2018 election. The museum is located across the campus service road from the park where Osage candidates traditionally set up camps to visit with voters who come to Pawhuska on Election Day.

Assistant Election Supervisor Courtney Piearcy said the office is running ads in the hard copies of the Osage News with at least three ads running so far which, include the upcoming important election-related dates.

Election Board member Belle Wilson said she believes the office needs to continually advertise the dates and information in case voters do not read or see earlier ads and articles that are election-related.

Congressional Speaker Joe Tillman asked the Election Board and staff if there is “any campaign or promotion to encourage Osage voters who are eligible to vote?” like other tribal nations who have promoted messages to “get out and vote.”

In the last election, the Election Office worked on a promotional video encouraging Osages to vote and there are plans to reshare the video online and via social media, Rencountre said, adding “We’re not going to do videos this year, that’s just not in our budget.”

Election Board vice chairwoman Terry Hazen said she also believed the Election Office social media platforms should also contain the same information and dates. Election staff agreed and said social media presence was also discussed among them.

The ON Election Office is listed as “Osage Elections” on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram social media platforms.

For more information on the elections, filing for candidacy, or to register or update addresses for voting, and to request absentee ballots, contact the Election Office toll-free at (877) 560-5286 or visit its current website at www.osagenation-nsn.gov/what-we-do/elections