breaking news

11 Warren County election candidates rejected due to petition problems

Published: Wednesday, August 14, 2019 @ 5:39 PM


            Jamie Belanger, president of the Springboro Board of Education, will be unopposed in his re-election bid. Two challengers will not appear on the November ballot due to nominating petition problems.
Jamie Belanger, president of the Springboro Board of Education, will be unopposed in his re-election bid. Two challengers will not appear on the November ballot due to nominating petition problems.

The Warren County Board of Elections on Tuesday rejected the petitions of 11 candidates expecting to be on November ballots.

As a result there will be few or no challengers for some offices, including Springboro school board.

Incumbents Jamie Belanger and Lisa Babb will be unopposed in their re-election to the Springboro Board of Education.

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One prospective challenger, Jeff Ziegler, declined to comment. The other, John Pawelski Jr., could not be reached.

Ziegler and Pawelski collected signatures before signing and dating their petitions, according to Brian Sleeth, county election board director.

RELATED: Coming school board election could end era in Springboro

“You just need to have a second set of eyes look at this before they are turned in,” he said. “There is no appeal process for rejected petitions.”

Ronald Boschert, a former member of the village council in Carlisle, also had his petitions for the school board election rejected.

RELATED: Warren County reelection bids thwarted by petition problems

Boschert was rejected for the same reason as Ziegler and Pawelski.

“You have to have the statement of candidacy filled out beforehand,” Sleeth said.

Anna Holt’s run for the Carlisle Local School Board ended because she submitted a petition with signatures from voters in the Montgomery and Warren county parts of the district.

“They have to be on separate petitions,” Sleeth said.

As a result, only signatures from Waren County residents counted, and Holt came up short of the 25 valid signatures required to make the ballot.

Holt and Boschert could not be reached for comment.

RELATED: Petition flaw leaves Carlisle without council race

Others who won’t appear on the Nov. 5 ballot include Susan Bitzer for Butlerville Village Clerk/Treasurer and Anthony Bitzer for village council; Dennis Oszakiewski for Corwin Village Mayor, Debra Femmer for Corwin Village Clerk/Treasurer, Jason Heys for Franklin Twp. Trustee and Trevor Rhoads and Mark Tipton for Harveysburg Village Council.

Board officials can’t review submitted petitions, but Sleeth offered more advice for future candidates.

“Make sure no blanks are left,” he said, while also urging candidates to ask election-savvy party officials to help them check their petitions before submitting them to the elections office.

Appearing on the November ballot will be 130 candidates for seats on local councils, boards of trustees and school boards.

In addition, voters are to see an additional school levy in Lebanon, additional fire and police levies in Hamilton Twp., a fire levy renewal in Harlan Twp., bond and tax levies in the Kings and Loveland districts, as well as a renewal levy in the Warren County Combined Health District.