Mayor Mike Collins, challenger Michael Lambert and Plainfield village trustee candidate Mike Guinta will get the chance to defend their right to stay on the April 9 election ballot this Friday.
Three separate hearings are scheduled for Jan. 11 to address objections to the candidates’ nominating petitions.
Collins faces a challenge from Plainfield resident John Ledvina, who claims that the mayor’s statement of candidacy omits language that states that Collins was known to the person who certified the nominating forms — which could lead to potential fraud, according to the complaint.
Meanwhile, village resident Jeffrey Schmitt is objecting to nominating forms filed by Collins’ opponent, Michael Lambert, as well as village trustee candidate Mike Guinta.
Schmitt argues that neither candidate has enough valid signatures to reach the required number of 104.
Schmitt’s objection claims that some people who signed the forms are not registered voters at the addresses listed, while some signatures are printed instead of signed — both of which are violations of the Illinois election code.
In Lambert's case, Schmitt also claims that one person who signed the petition and also circulated two pages of the forms gave two different addresses, and says the signatures she collected should be stricken.
Lambert, a local historian and architect, also writes the "A Town Called Plainfield" history column on Plainfield Patch.
According to Schmitt, Guinta, a local developer, was also a decade off, writing the date of the election as April 9, 2003, on several pages of the forms.
Electoral board members presiding over Guinta’s hearing are Collins, who will serve as chairman, plus trustee Paul Fay and village clerk Michelle Gibas.
Meanwhile, Fay (chairman), Gibas and trustee Jim Racich will oversee hearings for Collins and Lambert.
The hearings, which will take place at Village Hall, are scheduled as follows:
- 10 a.m. – Collins
- 11 a.m. – Lambert
- 1:30 p.m. - Guinta
Library board challenges
An electoral board will also hear challenges against petitions filed against three Plainfield Public Library Board of Trustees candidates.
All three complaints, which question the validity of signatures on the nominating petitions of David Schmidt, Alice Adeszko and Lauren Ledvina, were filed by Plainfield Park District commissioner Peter Hurtado.
After a meeting of the electoral board on Wednesday, the hearings have been set to begin at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 15, at the Will County office building, 302 N. Chicago St. in Joliet. According to Hurtado, rules for the proceedings were established at the initial Jan. 9 meeting.
Hurtado’s daughter, Samantha Hurtado, is also running for the library board, which has four seats up for election this April.
Hurtado maintains the three candidates failed to secure the required 50 nominating signatures, saying their forms contain signatures of residents who do not live within the boundaries of the library district.
Library Director Julie Milavec said in the case of the library board challenges, Will County officials act as the electoral board.
“… So we are actually not involved in the process,” Milavec said. “We accept the objections and forward them to the county, then are notified about the result after the hearing.”
READ: Park Board Member Challenging Library Candidates
Editor's note: This story was updated at 11:50 p.m. Jan. 9 to reflect a new hearing date for the Plainfield Library Board challenges.