(Editor's Note: In an effort to inform our readers of various governmental offices that are subject to election/re-election in 2013, with this story, the TIMES NEWS begins a five-part series relating to the election process.)

A county and municipal election cycle awaits voters in Carbon County in 2013.

Whereas last year's elections focused on state and national offices, there will be races in boroughs, townships and school districts this time around, in addition to three Carbon County row office holders terms of office being set to expire.

Those offices include Register of Wills and Clerk of the Orphans' Court, Clerk of Courts and Treasurer.

Three incumbents are currently seated in those positions, including Judy F. Moon of Nesquehoning, the register of wills; William C. McGinley of Mahoning Township, clerk of courts; and Ronald J. Sheehan of Jim Thorpe, treasurer. All three office holders are registered Democrats.

In the past, the two offices of jury commissioners in the county are decided by the electorate. But because the Carbon County Board of Commissioners voted previously to abolish those offices, there will be no election for those positions.

The validity of the abolishment, however, remains held in abeyance because of a challenge in state court to the law adopted by the legislature that allowed for the abolishment of the offices.

The current jury commissioners in Carbon County are Democrat Joanne M. Maurer and Republican Joe Steber. Both reside in Nesquehoning.

By law, the Carbon County Board of Commissioners are required to establish the salaries for row offices before the terms are filled by the voters. The row office positions are four-year terms.

As a result of recent action of the commissioners, the salaries of the treasurer and clerk of courts for the term of 2014-2017 will be as follows: 2014, $57,764; 2015, $57,764; 2016, $58,342; and 2017, $59,509.

The register of wills, because it is a joint office that also includes responsibilities as clerk of the orphans' court, will be paid as follows in the next term: 2014, $58,917, plus $2,000; 2015, $58,917, plus $2,000; 2016, $59,526, plus $2,000; and 2017, $60,757, plus $2,000.

A three-week period of petition circulating will officially begin on Tuesday, Feb. 19, where persons seeking to get their names on the ballot for the offices that are up for election ask registered voters of the Democratic and Republican parties to sign their petitions. Persons running for county office are required to obtain 100 signatures in order to file their petitions.

That period will run through Tuesday, March 12.

The election process will begin with the municipal Primary Election on Tuesday, May 21, with successful nominees vying for the offices in the General Election that will take place this year on Tuesday, Nov. 5.

For persons wanting to register to vote, the registration period is open from now until April 22.