ROCK FALLS – A hearing was postponed Friday on an appeal of the city Electoral Board’s dismissal of a candidate for mayor.
Local businessman Allen Boseneiler, who hopes to run for mayor of Rock Falls, asked Whiteside County Associate Judge Bill McNeal for more time to find a lawyer to assist his appeal. McNeal postponed the hearing for 2 weeks.
Boseneiler filed in December to run for mayor against incumbent Mayor David Blanton and City Clerk Bill Wescott.
But in January, the city’s three-member Electoral Board declared he could not be on the ballot because, at the time he filed for office, he owed $150 in city fines. That violates state municipal code, the board ruled.
On Friday afternoon, the judge granted Boseneiler’s request for more time to find a lawyer. The case will now be heard at 1:30 p.m. Feb. 22.
The city’s Electoral Board was represented Friday by attorney Tom Sanders.
Before the judge postponed the hearing, Sanders filed a motion to dismiss all of Boseneiler’s objections to the candidacies of Blanton and Wescott. Boseneiler also is appealing the Electoral Board’s rejection of those objections.
Sanders said there are “specific procedural requirements” that must be met under Election Code for a case from an Electoral Board to be appealed to the circuit court.
“There is a 5-day window from the date of service of the Electoral Board decision to file action for judicial review of that decision,” he said.
Individual members of the Electoral Board have to be served with notice within those 5 days, Sanders said.
“If you don’t do all of that, [under] Election Code, it says that the court is without subject matter jurisdiction to even hear the case,” he said.
Sanders said Boseneiler served Mark Searing and Rock Falls City Attorney Jim Reese. Sanders said under Election Code, that is “insufficient.”
In Boseneiler’s appeal of the dismissal of objections to Blanton and Wescott, he served the two candidates with papers, but not members of the board, Sanders said.
Sanders said members of the Electoral Board also should have been served with papers.
“They had to be named in it,” he said. “They are necessary parties under case law.”
McNeal will rule on Sanders’ motion and Boseneiler’s appeals on Feb. 22.