Louisianans head to the polls Saturday for the fall general election

In Orleans Parish, four city council seats and the clerk of the district court will be decided in runoff races, as will the Orleans Parish sheriff.

Runoff races and local ballot propositions in Louisiana will be decided during Saturday’s fall general election.

The state’s majority-vote system allows all candidates to run for office in the same primary. A candidate can win a seat with more than 50% of the primary vote, but if no candidate achieves a majority, then the top two vote-receiving candidates compete in a general election.

Accordingly, eight parishes are holding Saturday candidate races – Ascension, Bossier, Catahoula, East Baton Rouge, Iberia, Orleans, Rapides and Vernon – and all but Vernon Parish will include local ballot propositions as well.

The general election will “include runoffs for special elections held to fill vacancies in parishes, municipalities, and districts,” the secretary of state’s office said.

In Orleans Parish, four city council seats and the clerk of the district court will be decided in runoff races, as will the Orleans Parish sheriff.

Longtime incumbent Sheriff Marlin Gusman managed 48% of the primary vote in November, following Gov. John Bel Edwards’ five-week election delay because of Hurricane Ida. Gusman is facing challenger Susan Hutson, who has served as the independent police monitor for the New Orleans Police Department for more than a decade.

New Orleans, which has the same boundaries as Orleans Parish, has seen a surge in violent crime in recent years.

In other elections, Catahoula Parish will hold a special primary for police juror in District 3. St. Tammany Parish voters will decide whether a casino can relocate within the parish. Ouachita Parish will hold a recall election, in which voters will decide whether to part ways with Richwood Mayor Gerald Brown.

Thirty-four parishes in total will have local tax and bond issues and other propositions on the ballot, while 29 parishes will have no elections at all.

Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin has urged voter participation on social media.

“Do you have anything on your ballot? Log into our online voter portal at http://GeauxVote.com or http://voterportal.sos.la.gov and choose ‘My Sample Ballot’ to see if you have any items on your ballot for this election,” he said Friday.

Ardoin said absentee ballots must be returned to the Registrar of Voters Office by 4:30 p.m. Friday, and polls open at 7 a.m. Saturday and close at 8 p.m.

“Anyone in line at 8 p.m. will be allowed to vote,” the secretary of state’s office said.

According to the secretary of state’s website, voters will need to show a valid photo identification, such as a Louisiana driver’s license, state-issued special ID card or “generally recognized picture identification card with name and signature,” such as a passport or military ID.

Voters without a proper identification will be required to fill out an affidavit, the secretary of state’s office said, after which they will be allowed to vote.