Current office hours are 8:00am-12:00pm; 1:00pm-4:30pm.

How to Run for Public Office

The burden is on the candidate to familarize themselves with the laws surrounding running for public office.  Candidates should review the Campaign Finance Overview for Local Candidate Committees before asking the Election Commission for assistance.

State law and local ordinances require the completion of several forms when running for office.  Each of these forms can be found at our Candidate Packet Forms section.

► Spring 2023 Ballot Access Checklist

► Spring 2023 Candidates

► Spring 2023 Nomination Papers​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

► On November 28, 2022, President Perez ordered a Special Election to be held with the Spring 2023 election for the office of Alderperson in Districts 1, 5, and 9.  Nomination papers are able to be circulated as of November 28th and will be due on January 3, 2023.  The Special Election will be held in the old aldermanic boundaries (pre-2021 redistricting).  Candidates should use these boundaries when circulating nomination papers:


Candidates are prohibited from campaign fundraising or incurring campaign expenses until this form has been filed with the City of Milwaukee Election Commission. This form requires you to:

  • Identify the office you will be pursuing
  • List the bank information for your campaign finance account
  • Provide the name and contact information of your campaign treasurer
             You may act as your own campaign treasurer.  However, due to the complexity of completing the forms correctly, the Election Commission encourages you to select someone for this position that has a good familiarity with Excel spreadsheets and tracking expenses and revenue.



The Declaration of Candidacy is due to the City of Milwaukee Election Commission no later than 5:00pm on the day of the deadline for filing nomination papers.


Completed nomination papers must be submitted to the City of Milwaukee Election Commission no later than 5:00pm on the day of the deadline.

Read all instructions relating to the distribution of nomination papers to ensure that each page of your signatures meets circulating requirements. All nomination signatures are reviewed by the City of Milwaukee Election Commission and may be challenged by other candidates running for office. 

If a signer’s address is not legible or valid, or the person resides outside of the area represented by the officeholder, the signature will be disqualified. While it is not required, you are encouraged to collect at least 100 signatures more than the minimum requirement. You are also encouraged to verify the addresses included on your nomination papers on Where Do I Vote? before submitting them. Once nomination papers are submitted, no changes can be made. 


Municipal Candidates (Mayor, Alderpersons, City Attorney, City Comptroller, City Treasurer): The Statement of Economic Interests form and instructions will be posted on our website after December 1st each year. This form is due to the City of Milwaukee Election Commission by 4:30pm on the 3rd day following the deadline for filing nomination papers.

Municipal Judge Candidates: Complete and submit a Statement of Economic Interests (SEI) to the Wisconsin Ethics Commission, 212 East Washington Avenue, 3rd Floor, P.O. Box 7984, Madison, WI, 53707-7984, no later than 4:30 PM on the 3rd day following the deadline for filing nomination papers. Any time after December 1st, a candidate may electronically enter and submit the Statement of Economic Interests form with the Wisconsin Ethics Commission at

School Board Candidates: Milwaukee Board of School Director candidates are exempt from this filing requirement.


All nomination paper signatures will be reviewed after the deadline for submission. In some instances, the Election Commission may ask you to provide a corrective affidavit if errors have been made on a nomination page. If your nomination papers are complete (there are a sufficient number of valid signatures) and all other filing requirements have been met, your nomination papers will be certified as sufficient by the Election Commission and your name will appear on the ballot. If there are not enough valid signatures on your nomination papers or you did not complete all filing requirements, your name will not appear on the ballot.

If more than two candidates are certified for one office, there will be a primary election for that office. The order of candidate names on the ballot is determined through a random drawing selection process. Notice of the drawing is provided to all candidates and the public is invited to witness this process.

You may not remove your name from the ballot once your nomination papers have been certified.


Unless you have declared an exemption (you do not expect to raise or spend an aggregate of over $2,000 on your campaign), you are required to file campaign finance reports. We will email or mail a reminder prior to each filing due date as indicated on the Campaign Finance Report Filing schedule. However you are responsible for filing a campaign finance report whether or not you receive the reminder. Campaign finance schedules and reporting requirements can be complex and require significant attention to detail and an ability to learn and understand reporting instructions.  You are encouraged to select a campaign treasurer that is reliable and organized.  All reports must be complete, accurate and meet full public disclosure requirements.

Are You Ready to Run?

The process of running for office in the City of Milwaukee is guided by Wisconsin Election and Campaign Laws, chapters 5-12 and the Wisconsin Elections Commission (WEC).  An important role of the City of Milwaukee Election Commission is to provide information and assistance to any person interested in running for public office in the city. However, as per Wisconsin state law: Any person interested in running for office has the burden and responsibility of understanding and complying with candidate filing and campaign finance reporting requirements. 

This site is powered by the Northwoods Titan Content Management System