The Ascension Parish Republican Executive Committee plans an election forum for parish president and Parish Council candidates from all parties from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday, organizers said.

The 16 candidates running in elections for six Parish Council seats have been invited to speak during the first hour of the forum at the Gonzales Civic Center, 219 S. Irma Blvd., Gonzales, organizers with the party committee said in a statement.

Under the rules of the forum, each council candidate gets three minutes to speak. Races in Council Districts 2 and 7 are open because incumbents have decided not to seek re-election or are running for other offices. In the other four races, incumbents are being challenged for re-election. The council has 11 seats. Five incumbents were re-elected Sept. 10 when they drew no opponents.

The forum’s second hour will allow the five candidates for parish president to speak. They are running in a wide-open race. Four-term Parish President Tommy Martinez is not running for another term.

Under the rules of the forum, each candidate will be given two minutes for an opening statement, one minute for a closing statement and one minute to answer one of the questions given to each candidate. There will be no rebuttals, organizers said.