Forum to pit Urbana mayor, city clerk candidates
Editor's note: News-Gazette reporter Patrick Wade will write about this event as it happens on his blog and on Twitter.
URBANA — The four candidates from two Urbana Democratic primary races will have a chance to make their cases to voters and answer questions from the public on Friday night.
Mayor Laurel Prussing and her challenger, Les Stratton, are scheduled to appear during a forum co-sponsored by the League of Women Voters of Champaign County and the Champaign County NAACP. City Clerk Phyllis Clark and her challenger, Robert Michael Gatsche, are also scheduled to speak.
The forum is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. Friday in the Urbana City Building, 400 S. Vine St. The event is free and open to the public.
The four Urbana candidates will be the only names on the ballot during a Feb. 26 primary election. Early voting is already open for that primary, and 107 voters have already cast ballots, according to Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten.
The winner of the Democratic primary for mayor would still need to beat Republican challenger Rex Bradfield in an April 9 election to be elected to that office. The primary election for city clerk will effectively determine a winner, as there is no Republican challenger.
On Friday, each candidate will be given two minutes for an opening statement, and then they will be presented with questions from audience members. Those questions will be written on index cards and screened for duplicates and personal attacks.
The forum will broadcast live on UPTV Channel 6 and then rebroadcast at noon Saturday, 10:15 a.m. and 9 p.m. Sunday, and once per day the following Monday through Friday.