CLEVELAND  — All or parts of seven Cuyahoga County municipalities are holding local primaries Tuesday for various city council and mayoral races. The primaries will help whittle the field of candidates down ahead of November’s general election.

What You Need To Know

  • Seven Cuyahoga County municipalities are holding primaries on Tuesday

  • Seven candidates are vying to replace Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson

  • Four candidates are on the ballot to become Cleveland Heights’ first elected mayor
  • Polls will be open Tuesday from 6:30 a.m. through 7:30 p.m. 

While Cleveland is set to decide which two candidates will square off to become the city’s first new mayor in 16 years, Cleveland Heights is set to decide the two candidates who will compete to be the city’s first ever elected mayor. 

Here is a guide to Tuesday’s races:

What's on the ballot?

Primaries can be confusing as their purpose is to simply slim the number of candidates running for office. 

Here are the areas of Cuyahoga County having primaries:

Bay Village: City Council ward No. 3

Cleveland: Mayor, City Council ward Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 11, 12 and 17

Cleveland Heights: Mayor

East Cleveland: Mayor (Democratic ballot)

Garfield Heights: Mayor, City Council ward No. 6

Lakewood: City Council: At-large, Municipal Court judge

Solon: City Council ward No. 4

What's different about this primary?

Unlike presidential, gubernatorial or congressional elections, most municipal races in Cuyahoga County are considered “nonpartisan.” The only partisan primary in Cuyahoga County on Tuesday is in the East Cleveland mayoral race. In that race, voters will be required to declare as a Democrat in order to vote in the primary.

When can I vote?

Polls will be open Tuesday from 6:30 a.m. through 7:30 p.m. 

The Board of Elections is also reminding voters who cast an in-person ballot to be prepared to display identification. Acceptable forms of identification include: an unexpired Ohio Driver’s License, State ID Card, Interim Documentation with your former address, Military ID, or current (within the last 12 months) utility bill, bank statement, government check, or paycheck with the voter’s name and present address, the Board of Elections said.

Who is running for Cleveland mayor?

Seven candidates are in the race to replace Mayor Frank Jackson who has held the seat for 16 years. Tuesday's primary will reduce the field to two candidates for November's general election. Here is who is running:

  • Justin Bibb
  • Ross DiBello
  • Basheer Jones
  • Kevin Kelley
  • Dennis Kucinich
  • Zack Reed
  • Sandra Williams

More information on the candidates is available on our website. 

Cleveland Heights to have first elected mayor

The nonpartisan race of four will put the two hopefuls on the ballot for the Nov. 2 General Election. The newly elected mayor will replace the city manager form of government in which the manager is appointed by seven, at-large council members who are elected to four-year terms.

More on the candidates running to become the city’s first elected mayor is available here.


More information on Tuesday’s primary is available on the Board of Elections’ website.