Ex-Buffalo Grove trustee moves to keep village board candidate off ballot

A former elected official in Buffalo Grove has filed a challenge to the nominating petitions of Gowri Magati, a candidate for one of three trustee seats in the April village board election.

Jeffrey Berman, a five-term trustee who finished his long tenure on the board in 2019, registered his objection to the nominating papers Wednesday.

In his objection, Berman alleges that Magati's petition contains signatures of people who are not registered voters in the village, duplicate signatures, and signatures that "are not genuine and do not match the official signatures" on file at the county clerk's office.

He also maintains there are signatures that were not signed in the presence of the petition circulator, contrary to sworn certifications by Magati.

Magati, who had not received the objection documents as of Wednesday, said she was not prepared to comment other than to say she is confident the signatures are legitimate and the residents who signed are registered voters.

"Before taking signatures, I checked with the person whether they were registered or not," she said.

Berman believes the petition contains at least 43 signatures of unregistered residents, two duplicate signatures and at least 98 signatures that do not appear to be genuine. If his objections are sustained, Magati would fall short of the required 259-signature minimum to get on the April 6 ballot.

"This one on its face sent up a number of red flags based on observation," Berman said. "And in looking on it further, I found what is described in the objection petition, which is that there are serious flaws in the petition and therefore the nominating papers."

A date for the village's electoral board to hear the objection has not been scheduled.

Gowri Magati
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