Sugar Grove trustee candidate withdraws, another is kicked off the ballot

  • Ted Koch

    Ted Koch

 
 
Updated 1/13/2021 2:20 PM
Editor's note: The story has been updated to clarify Rachel Rockwell's support for village president candidate Jennifer Konen.

A Sugar Grove village trustee candidate who has been kicked off the spring ballot says she intends to run as a write-in.

And another candidate announced Monday that he is withdrawing from the race.

 

Rachel Rockwell said she will seek write-in votes in her bid for one of three 4-year seats on the village board.

Meanwhile, Sugar Grove Trustee Ted Koch said he withdrew from the race because he believes the remaining candidates on the ballot -- Jamie White, Michael Schomas and incumbent Sean Herron -- are good for the job.

"I had been thinking about stepping away for a while. I was reluctant to file in the first place," said Koch, who was appointed to the board in July 2015.

Koch was the one who examined Rockwell's nominating petitions and suggested Schomas, who is one of his neighbors, challenge the petitions.

Koch said someone shouldn't be on the village board "if you can't get the simple act of getting ballot petitions together," and questioned how Rockwell would manage the details of budgets and contracts.

At an electoral board hearing Friday, Rockwell acknowledged she made a mistake on 13 pages, containing 122 signatures. Rockwell typed her own name in a blank space in the oath portion that stated she was the circulator of the form. She then photocopied it and gave the copies to several people to collect signatures. After getting signatures, the circulators then signed the oath.

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The electoral board struck those pages, leaving her with just 40 signatures. She needed 55 to be on the ballot.

Rockwell tried to have Sugar Grove President Sean Michels removed from the electoral board. Rockwell supports the campaign of Trustee Jennifer Konen, who is running for president against Michels. Rockwell signed Konen's election petition, and said at the hearing that she had told Michels of her support for Konen. State law mandates the village president be on the board unless an objection concerns an opponent in his race, is a witness, or has a financial interest in the outcome.

She also argued Schomas' objection was improperly amended after he filed it. The board denied both motions.

"I believe that the voters should have anybody that wants to run put in front of them," Rockwell told the board, and that residents "have no interest in the drama" of petition challenges.

"The people are going to have to decide if they are looking for a power grab or if they want change in their community," Rockwell said.

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