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Thursday, January 6, 2011

Interview with George Smith

On the Spot Interview:

I ran into George Smith yesterday and asked if he could take a minute to answer some questions regarding the objections launched.  He agreed to an interview.

I asked him "What made you decide to object to the school board?"  George replied that he met with the Independent Party a few weeks back and Bonnie had pulled the signatures of the candidates.  She was explaining to the Party that the mistakes the elected officials made were rookie mistakes.  She made copies for everyone that wanted to run for an office in two years.  I took an extra copy and we followed along as she explained the issues in each one's nomination papers. It was quite a gathering and we all pondered why Mr. Quigley only turned in 90 signatures.

I started thinking about the fact that these elected officials are under the impression that residents don't check their petitions and allow them to run for office without meeting the requirements.  This seems unfair, as Bonnie was kicked off the ballot last year for many less infractions.

I spent some time prepping the reports and submitted them.  I wanted Roger's people to see that it is stressful to be objected to.  It cost time, money, and embarrassment to the candidates.  This is no way to treat people.  Yet in Bolingbrook, this is what they do to keep their strong hold.  Karma is Karma...

I saw what Bonnie said about each line and the mistakes.  I understood these to be issues. I saw that the minimum number of signatures were not met after their infractions.  I objected on the basis of truth to the residents and fairness in local elections.

The night before the hearing I called on Bonnie to ask her to assist me.  I did not need her to tell me what to object to, I had already done that.  I needed her to help me by writing down what was being asked or said, as my hearing aid was destroyed in a fire at my home three weeks ago.  It takes a long time for the VA to replace these things. 

Bonnie was not fond of having to go, but she did it because she knew they would neglect my disability and because the board was rigged with Kavanagh on it.  She told me ahead of time that the proof I had gotten at Will County was not notarized, but at least it was proof.  She also walked me through the fact that no matter what was shown, they would not remove their own people.  She told me to keep my cards in my hand and don't give them anything.  I see why she said that now...  Their counter objections has helped me prepare for each and every item in the appeal process.  They laid down their cards and let me take a look.

Bonnie helped me that day through the hearing, so that I knew what they were asking of me.  I am not sure why they do not have provisions for the hearing impaired.  She has helped me in the last few days since then, to teach me the process in case I decide to appeal now or object in the future.  She has helped me to organize my objections, gather the proper evidence, and prepare my appeal.

Bottom line, all three candidates fell short of the minimum number of signatures.  If I appeal, I will have all my proof with me.  If I take it to Will County, it will cost the candidates a great deal of legal costs, since Kavanagh cannot support them after sitting on the board. 

Maybe I will do that.  I don't think I will take Venegas to court.  He felt the consequence of his actions.  That was apparent.  I truly don't think he will make the same mistakes again.  I believe he learned something from this process.  He learned about fairness and the American Way.  He also shook my hand and thanked me for being a concerned resident.  This shows some class.

However, Mr. Quigley berated me because I could not "hear" the hearing.  He felt that this was not a part of the process of being an elected official.  He felt better then the system.  This pompous attitude, coupled with the fact that I reviewed all his signatures in Will County, should have him climb under a rock if I take my objection to Will County.  He will not last there if I do.  According to the law, he only has approx. 6 valid signatures.  He should have checked them over, walked for himself like everyone else does, and seen what it was like to have to pay money, time, and energy to work for our jobs. 

Mr. Gougis wanted to remove Bonnie from my corner.  I guess he felt she was a threat.  I guess nobody told him the objection was turned in a week before that.  I do not understand why he would want me to go through a hearing that I cannot hear.  That seems cruel to any hearing impaired veteran.  I don't respect that.  If he was blind, I would not take his walking stick.

In regards to Ken Cygan, I pulled his petitions to see what his signatures looked like.  He did not submit the maximum, he submitted a little over the minimum.  He had many issues.  He had people sign for others, forgot to initial his scratch offs, and some signatures were so illegible that the address or name was not recognizable.  He even was missing a notary stamp.  He had less then 200 valid signatures according to Will County when I went there to review the signatures.  The minimum was almost 300.  The problem was that I did not have each sheet notarized.  I had each signature, street values, etc.  Now, where else would I get those signatures if not the will county office?
So he narrowly escaped, but it does not mean he has escaped for long.  I have 5 days after tomorrow to object to his as well. 

I will make that decision after conferring with some local residents.  He came out of the box swinging at Bonnie, yet never met her.  He has never contributed to the community and did not have enough valid signatures.  I will decide soon.

In the meantime, I will continue to go to the meetings and tell people to come out and vote.  I will still tell people to watch the local elections and to watch what happens in this Village.  The independent party calls me the "watcher".  I watch, I listen, I learn, and I do what I think is best for the community.

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