Then there were…… none

February 6, 2009

By MIKE DANAHEY mdanahey@scn1.com
CARPENTERSVILLE — Come Monday evening — in theory, at least — there might not be anybody left on the ballot for village president or for the three open trustee seats in Carpentersville.

That’s because two residents, between them, have challenged the petitions collected by every single candidate, from the three men up for village president to the eight people running for trustee. The village’s three-member electoral board meets at 6:30 p.m. Monday on their objections.

Frank Stoneham has officially objected to the petitions gathered by Village President Bill Sarto and challenger Jim Krenz. In addition, Stoneham is looking to get incumbent Linda Ramirez-Sliwinski and fellow trustee candidates Kenneth Andresen, Joseph Haimann and Debra Lowen, wife of former Police Chief Robert Lowen, off the ballot.

In 2007, Sarto, Trustee Kay Teeter and Village Clerk Terri Wilde — who made up the village’s electoral board — voted unanimously to remove Stoneham from the ballot for trustee after two residents successfully challenged his petitions on the grounds some of the signatures collected were not registered voters.

Among Stoneham’s contentions is that Lowen and Andresen collected more than the required 225 signatures. His challenges also assert that Ramirez-Sliwinski, Sarto and Haimann have “less than 148 validly collected signatures.”

Resident Judith Gallagher filed objections against the other four trustee candidates, as well as a challenge to presidential candidates Ed Ritter and Krenz.

Gallagher’s assertions include that Kent Baldwin’s misspelling of “trustee” as “trustt” is a violation of election law and that because the heading for the office they seek is not the same wording on each of Ritter’s, Teeter’s and Bradford McFeggan’s petition sheets, they are in violation. Gallagher also said there are technical flaws in the petitions of trustee hopeful Patricia Schultz.

A panel of the village’s electoral board will meet to hear the objections. The three-member board will be made up of Sarto, Wilde and senior Trustee Judy Sigwalt. Since Sarto’s petitions have been challenged, Trustee Paul Humpfer will be the third member of the panel hearing in that case, Wilde said.

But Gallagher also wants Wilde to remove herself from the electoral board because she is to be called on to testify. Her presence on the panel will “create too great a ‘risk of bias,’ ” Gallagher stated.

Barring a successful challenge, the following is the order in which candidates would appear on the April 7 election ballot.

For village president, the top ballot spot will be Ritter, followed by Sarto and then Krenz. For trustee, the order is Schultz, Teeter, Haimann, Baldwin, Ramirez-Sliwinski, McFeggan, Lowen and Andresen.

Village Attorney James Rhodes and Wilde this week oversaw the drawing for the spots. Wilde explained that Sarto and Ritter were vying for the top village president spot, each waiting for the clerk’s office to open to file on the first day to file, Jan. 19. Schultz, Teeter and Haimann were the only trustee candidates there at that time. Ballot positions after that are determined on the order of candidates showing up to file petitions, Wilde explained.

Rhodes drew each candidate’s position by going alphabetically, picking a numbered paper square out of a large ceramic container. The drawing was witnessed by Ritter and Teeter.

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