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Panel to hear objections to County Board candidates Friday

Published: Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT
Clay Campbell
Riley Oncken

SYCAMORE – Douglas Johnson expects hearings on objections to the candidacy of several residents running for DeKalb County Board to be like a court hearing. 

And just as a court hearing, they will take place Friday at the DeKalb County Courthouse in Sycamore, said Johnson, county clerk and recorder. Would-be Republican County Board candidates Clay Campbell and Laurie Emmer both had objections to their nominating petitions filed yesterday. 

Johnson said Earl Gable filed an objection against Emmer, who is running for District 4. Gable says Emmer should not be included on the ballot because one of the 19 people who signed her nominating petition lives outside the district. He said Gable had his petition filed by Sycamore-based law firm Smith and Meyer, LLC. 

Gable resides in District 4. Emmer, who is challenging incumbent Anthony Cvek, R-Sycamore, said she personally gathered the signatures but said she was not sure whether the signature in question will count.

“I’m not saying I’m going to give up on this, but I will see the next steps,” she said. 

A call to Gable was not immediately returned Tuesday. His attorney Jeffrey Meyer said he would be representing him at the hearing.

Board member Riley Oncken, R-Sycamore, who is running again for a County Board District 3 seat, has objected to the nominating petition of his Republican rival, Campbell. In his objection, Oncken said the address in Campbell’s voter registration record is not in District 3. Although Campbell concedes his voter registration was not updated, he said it should not matter because he’s been a resident of District 3 for almost two years and the county for 25 years. 

Johnson said he will lead the Electoral Board that will rule on the objections. Joining him will be a representative for DeKalb County State’s Attorney Richard Schmack, and DeKalb County Circuit Clerk Maureen Josh or a representative.

If the board finds the objections are valid, the candidates names would not be included on the primary ballot in March. However, candidates still would have the option to run as write-ins.

“Depending on exhausting all deliberations, the board will go into deliberating on their own and it probably won’t be an open session,” Johnson said. 

The board will vote publicly, however. Johnson said it’s possible the hearings might have to be held Monday if the objectors or the candidates need more time.

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