Preckwinkle wades into court battle for water district seat

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Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle is jumping into the battle for a seat on the water treatment board.

As chair for the Cook County Democratic Party, she and the party’s executive committee are filing a motion this week to intervene on behalf of Democrat Cam Davis, whose name will appear on the ballot after an unusual write-in election.

The dispute went to court last week when the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District filed a motion requesting a judge to determine whether Davis or Gov. Bruce Rauner’s appointee, David Walsh, would fill the vacancy.

“We’re dismayed that Governor Rauner continues to insist that his candidate would serve until 2020,” Preckwinkle said. “He’s on the ballot in November, and we expect him to be elected. … This is the first time the Democratic Party has taken an action like this.”

The vacancy came into question when Commissioner Tim Bradford died on Dec. 1, 2017 — three days before the Dec. 4 primary candidate-filing deadline. After Cook County Clerk David Orr and the State’s Attorney’s Office opted for a write-in election, Davis and Green Party contender Geoffrey Cubbage ran campaigns for write-in votes, earning their party’s nominations. Republicans did not have a candidate in the mix, but Rauner appointed Walsh three weeks after the March primary.

“Our understanding is that due to the timing of the vacancy, under the statute Gov. Rauner has the responsibility to appoint a new member to serve until 2020,” Rauner spokeswoman Rachel Bond told the Sun-Times in March.

The district wants to prevent a delayed decision on the vacancy. The board needs to prepare for whichever incoming commissioner will fill the vacancy, including counting their vote fro the upcoming meeting that will set the agenda for its over $1 billion budget.

“The MWRD will not be able to take the necessary steps or properly credit votes if two individuals both claim right and attempt to occupy the same position,” the motion reads.

Oral arguments are scheduled for Oct. 22.


READ MORE:

Battle to fill water district vacancy goes to court

Plot thickens in sewage treatment race: Rauner pick could trigger court fight


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October 3, 2018 at 07:58PM

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