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Howard, Fletcher, Marietta first to qualify

Ward I Commissioner Jon Howard fills out the paperwork Monday to get on the ballot for his fifth term in office. Howard, Mayor Pro Tem Roger Marietta and businesswoman B.J. Fletcher each qualified for office on the opening day of qualifying week.

Ward I Commissioner Jon Howard fills out the paperwork Monday to get on the ballot for his fifth term in office. Howard, Mayor Pro Tem Roger Marietta and businesswoman B.J. Fletcher each qualified for office on the opening day of qualifying week.

ALBANY-- Albany City Commissioner Jon Howard, the longest-serving active city commissioner, and Albany Mayor Pro-Tem Roger Marietta, have qualified to run for re-election.

Along with the pair, businesswoman B.J. Fletcher has become the first official candidate for mayor after paying the $750 qualifying fee and filling out necessary paperwork Monday morning. Ward II Commissioner Dorothy Hubbard and former state Rep. John White have each said publicly they will seek the mayor's office, but neither qualified for the office Monday.

The mayor's post and as many as four City Commission seats will be decided during Albany municipal elections in November.

Howard is seeking his fifth four-year term on the board, while Marietta is seeking his second term as the elected representative of Ward IV. This is Fletcher's first foray into politics.

Ward VI Commissioner Tommie Postell has also announced intentions to seek re-election, but neither he nor former Dougherty County Commissioner Victor Edwards, who announced Saturday that he would run against Postell, had qualified to be on the ballot by Monday afternoon.

Qualifying is from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 9 a.m. to noon on Friday.

Once Hubbard qualifies to run for mayor, she will have to vacate her commission seat. If that happens early enough this week, her Ward II seat will be added to those decided in the November election and qualifying will be conducted for that post this week as well.