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Objections to all mayoral candidacies

Petitions of three hopefuls will be reviewed Friday

ROCK FALLS – The city’s three mayoral candidates will get together Friday, but it won’t be to debate the issues.

Instead, the validity of their candidacies will be debated.

Objections have been filed to the petitions of each of the candidates.

Candidate Allen Boseneiler, a local businessman, has challenged the filings of his opponents, Mayor David Blanton and City Clerk Bill Wescott.

City Building Inspector Mark Searing has challenged Boseneiler’s paperwork.

All of the objections were filed Jan. 3.

The Rock Falls Board of Elections will have a special meeting to consider the objections at 3 p.m. Friday at City Hall.

Searing, in a typed letter addressed to the elections board, wrote that numerous sheets in Boseneiler’s petition “have been struck and no clarification of deletion form” has been filed as required.

He also wrote that Boseneiler’s petition sheets have “signatures that are not registered voters within the city of Rock Falls.” Searing noted that the petition sheet “is not totally completed, with the election and election date missing from each petition sheet.”

Boseneiler said Tuesday that he stands by his petitions.

“To the best of my knowledge, they are right and proper,” he said. “I talked to each person, signed in my presence. Best good faith effort.”

Searing’s objection was filed at 3:45 p.m. Jan. 3, the last day candidacies could be challenged.

Later that day, Boseneiler brought to City Hall his objections to the candidacies of Blanton and Wescott.

In a handwritten letter, Boseneiler listed reasons he took issue with Blanton’s petitions.

Boseneiler requested that the elections board verify “proper filing of all documents, including signatures being registered voters in the city of Rock Falls,” among other objections.

In addition, he wanted to verify the petitions “were signed in my presence (of circulator); were within 90 days of filing deadline; that residences were correctly stated and that they are originals not copies.”

Blanton said he “absolutely” is confident his petition will stand.

“We filed everything like we always do,” Blanton said in response to Boseneiler’s objections. “He objects to everything we do.”

Blanton said Boseneiler “is doing what he always does.”

“It’s unfortunate,” the mayor said. “He’s making a mockery of everything.”

The objections to Wescott’s petition are nearly identical.

Wescott said that while objections are part of the process, he doesn’t agree with Boseneiler’s complaint.

“To me, there’s no validity to them,” Wescott said. “It seems to be a laundry list of items that the objector would like someone else to have to work diligently to check to make sure they’re there.”

Wescott said he expects the board will find that “everything is intact” with his paperwork.

Blanton and Wescott are on the elections board, but had to be replaced for Friday’s hearings. Alderman Glen Kuhlemier will serve as chairman. He will be joined by Alderman Lee Folsom and Rock Falls resident Pamela Erby, who was appointed by 14th Judicial Circuit Chief Judge Jeffrey O’Connor.

The objections will be heard in the order they were filed – first the objection against Boseneiler, and then the challenges to Blanton and Wescott. The meeting is open to the public.

To attend

The Rock Falls Board of Elections will meet in special session Friday to consider objections filed to the petitions of all three mayoral candidates. The meeting begins at 3 p.m. at City Hall, 603 W. Tenth St., Rock Falls.

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