City Election

Election Calendar

City elections are held during odd-numbered years to elect a variety of positions including: mayors, city council members, hospital trustees, park board members, and treasurers. Public measures are often included on the ballot. The number of council members and length of terms varies by city. 


Some cities in Iowa require primary elections. A city primary election only occurs if needed. A city primary is not a partisan primary election, and any eligible voter may participate regardless of party affiliation. The city primary is held on the first Tuesday following the first Monday in October.

Four cities require primary elections to narrow the field of candidates if enough candidates run.
  • Elkport: Mayor, Elect One and City Council, Elect Three
  • Garber: Mayor, Elect One and City Council, Elect Five
  • North Buena Vista: Mayor, Elect One and City Council, Elect Five
  • Osterdock: Mayor, Elect One and City Council, Elect Five
Mayor, Elect One: Primary required if three or more candidates file. Top two advance.
City Council, Elect Three: Primary required if seven or more candidates file. Top six advance.
City Council, Elect Five: Primary required if eleven or more candidates file. Top ten advance.

If a city primary election is not needed, all candidates will be placed on the ballot in November.

View Candidate Information here.


Some cities in Iowa require runoff elections if no candidate wins a majority of the vote. This is the case for St. Olaf and Farmersburg only. Lots are drawn to break ties for other cities.

Cities in Other Counties

Some cities in Clayton County are primarily located in other counties. Elections for each district are administered by one county, called the "control county." For information about other city elections for districts that include parts of Clayton County, please contact the following County Auditor's offices:
  • City of Edgewood - Delaware County Auditor, Phone: 563-927-4701
  • City of Postville - Allamakee County Auditor, Phone: 563-568-3522
Elections in Edgewood and Postville are run by neighboring counties. Absentee ballots are sent by these counties, not by Clayton County.
  • Edgewood - Delaware County
  • Postville - Allamakee County

Sample Ballots

View Sample Ballots in the Archive Center.