Saudargas' name removed from ballot; response from campaign - – Rockford’s News Leader

Saudargas' name removed from ballot; response from campaign


A former long-time Rockford school board member is removed from the ballot.  And she's not there to hear the decision.

Electoral board members say Saudargas had plenty of notice of this hearing, so when she didn't show, they moved right ahead.

"Is the candidate present?  Representation of the candidate?"  That was Harmon Mitchell's question.

Last week it was health.  This week, we don't know why Alice Saudargas didn't appear.  She didn't have a lawyer or anyone else to represent her either.

"The electoral board finds that 28 of the signatures on the signature page are ineligible under the election code."

Those 28 signatures, according to school board president Harmon Mitchell and attorneys presenting the objections to the signatures, were invalid.

Many didn't have an address in subdistrict c, the seat that Saudargas wants to challenge Ken Scrivano for.  Julie Pick does live in subdistrict c.  She's the voter objecting to Saudargas' petition.

According to a statement by Saudargas, pick is a SwedishAmerican hospital employee; the same place Ken Scrivano works.  Pick's legal counsel says her client is a voter first and foremost.

"It was strictly an interested voter who had some other assistance from people who checked out the signatures and determined that there were a large number that were invalid under the election code requirements," said Roberta Holzwarth.

With 28 signatures removed, Saudargas doesn't meet the required 50 to file petition.

"We're not surprised that the board accepted the objections because of our investigation showing that they were a problem," said Holzwarth.

The retired teacher, principal and former board member isn't backing down just yet.

In a written statement Saudargas says, "Somebody is forking over some big money to bury my campaign, and I simply don't have the resources to hire a high-powered legal team to fight back.  It saddens me that such drastic measures are necessary just to give voters a choice when they go to the polls."

Saudargas also says she has affidavits from 8 voters who signed her original petition and live in subdistrict c but current addresses are not on file with the local election authority.

She's also considering taking her case to court or filing as a write in candidate.

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