Controller candidate faces state residency challenge
April 1, 2014
Michael Schaefer, one of two Democrats running for state controller, faces a complaint charging he hasn’t been a Nevada resident long enough to run.
Scott Gilles, elections deputy for the Secretary of State’s office, said he has submitted the issue to the Attorney General’s office for review. He said Schaefer doesn’t argue that last year, he was a candidate for a local government office in California.
Nevada law requires a person to be a Nevada resident for the two years before running for a constitutional office.
Gilles said Schaefer confirmed to him that he ran for the Los Angeles City Council District 13 seat in 2013.
He said the Los Angeles City-County Clerk also confirmed that Schaefer declared himself a California resident in filing for that post.
“But he said he has always retained an address in Nevada,” Gilles said. Schaefer lists an address in Las Vegas as his home.
He said Schaefer has indicated he intends to challenge the statute mandating that candidates be a Nevada resident two years as unconstitutional.
The other Democrat in the race is Las Vegas accountant Andrew Martin, currently a member of the Nevada Assembly.
Gilles said he hopes the case can be resolved before April 25, when printed ballots must be mailed to overseas military and other voters. If not and a judge later takes him off the ballot, Gilles said, Schaefer’s name will appear on the ballot but the results won’t be counted because Martin would be the only valid candidate left.
Including Schaefer and Martin, there are six candidates for controller. Three are Republicans and one an Independent American Party member.
Incumbent Kim Wallin is termed out and is running for treasurer.