Jefferson Davis is a longtime resident of Menomonee Falls. He is the proud parent of two wonderful boys. He enjoys singing, volunteering, reading, gardening, politics, antiques, history, guitar, violin, piano, officiating, helping neighbors and yard work. He served as Village President of Menomonee Falls from 2003-05. He is a member of Northbrook Church and serves on the Advisory Council for the Salvation Army Rehabilitation Center. He is an independent registered representative practicing in the areas of insurance, investments and retirement.
Apparent Illegal Certification of 3rd Candidate's Election Papers by Clerk's Office for February 16th Primary Election
In a totally uncovered story by the 4 local newspapers, who have all been made aware of a major mistake by the Clerk's Office involving a candidate missing the filing deadline for placement of their name on the February 16th Primary ballot, it appears the Village Clerk's Office illegally certified the election filing papers of Scott Krause who is or was, depending on what day it is, the 3rd candidate for Village Trustee Seat 4 currently held by 20-year incumbent Mike McDonald.
A primary election is held when there is more than 2 candidates for one seat on the Village Board to narrow the field down to 2 candidates for the April 6th Election.
The ladies who work in the front office area of the Clerk's Office are excellent employees and are always friendly and engaging in their handling of questions, documents or providing assistance to the public.
3rd Candidate Mysteriously Drops Out of Race
In a strange and mysterious development on February 1, 2010, Scott Krause, citing "personal reasons", dropped out of the race for Village Trustee Seat 4 only to endorse the very person he was running against, 20-year incumbent Mike McDonald.
Members of The Vanguard applied the "smell test" to this development and started digging into the matter only to find out some very revealing and interesting information at the Clerk's Office.
The acting Village Clerk has been submitted a number of questions about the matter and has refused to answer any of them with the exception being that she doesn't have any choice but to have the election on February 16th per Wisconsin State Statute 8.35 which states:
"Any person who files nomination papers and qualifies to appear on the ballot may not decline nomination. The name of that person shall appear on the ballot except in case of death of the person.”
Candidate's Papers Missed the January 5, 2010 5:00 P.M. Filing Deadline
With copies obtained by The Vanguard from the Clerk's Office, the following time-line unequivocally establishes what happened with the apparent illegal certification of Scott Krause's name being placed on the ballot for the February 16th Primary Election:
Scott Krause did not meet the January 5, 2010 5:00 P.M. filing deadline with his Campaign Registration Statement (GAB-1) that in part reads:
If a candidate does not file this statement by the deadline for filing nomination papers, the candidate's name will not be placed on the ballot.
Scott Krause did not certify his Campaign Registration Statement until January 14, 2010 when he returned to the Clerk's Office to affix his signature in the Certification Section.
To view the entire GAB-1 State Elections Board form, please click here (http://elections.state.wi.us/docview.asp?docid=1691&locid=47).
By not filing his Campaign Registration Statement on time, Scott Krause's name was apparently not legally certified by the Clerk's Office to be placed on the February 16th Primary Election ballot.
This was a major mistake by the Clerk's Office.
The Clerk's Office needed to have applied the following Wisconsin State Statutes that govern when a candidate's name is to be placed on the ballot:
(1) Except as otherwise provided in this section, the official or agency with whom declarations of candidacy are required to be filed may refuse to place the candidate's name on the ballot if any of the following apply:
(1) Any person who files nomination papers and qualifies to appear on the ballot may not decline nomination. The name of that person shall appear upon the ballot except in case of death of the person. A person who is appointed to fill a vacancy in nomination or who is nominated by write-in votes is deemed to decline nomination if he or she fails to file a declaration of candidacy within the time prescribed under sub. (2) (c) or s. 8.16 (2).
(2g) Candidates and personal campaign committees. Every candidate as defined in s. 11.01 (1) shall file a registration statement with the appropriate filing officer giving the information required by sub. (3). If a candidate appoints another person as campaign treasurer the candidate's registration statement shall be cosigned by the candidate and the candidate's appointed treasurer. A candidate who receives no contributions and makes no disbursements shall file such statement as provided in s. 11.10 (1) but need not appoint a campaign treasurer or designate a campaign depository account until the first contribution is received or disbursement made.
(5m) Certification. Every statement and every change made in a statement filed under this section shall contain a certification signed by the individual filing the statement that all information contained in the statement is true, correct and complete.
Scott Krause returned to the Clerk's Office to certify his Campaign Registration Statement for the first time on January 14, 2010 which is 9 days after the filing deadline.
Scott Krause returned to the Clerk's Office on 1-22-10 to amend and re-certify his Campaign Registration Statement which is 17 days after the filing deadline.
Amendments by candidates are done all of the time.
Candidates, however, do not get a "do over" with filing deadlines.
A candidate either meets the deadline or they don't .
You're either pregnant or you're not.
Complaint filed with Clerk's Office
A formal complaint was filed with the Clerk's Office on February 5, 2010 asking that the February 16th Primary Election be canceled due to the apparent illegal certification of Scott Krause's name being placed on the ballot and to save taxpayers thousands of dollars for an election that a candidate has dropped out of and because the candidate's name was apparently illegally placed on the ballot.
Costs of February 16th Primary Election Explored
Menomonee Falls has 12 polling places with 6-8 workers per polling place.
The poll workers put in about 14 hours on election day and are apparently paid a flat fee of somewhere between $100-$125.
Ballots are printed and probably cost around $500+/-.
Village Staff have to set up the polling places with machines, ballots and signage as well as putting everything away once the election is over.
The Clerk's Office has to prepare for the election as well as certifying the election results once the election is over involving some overtime pay.
A fair estimate of election costs would easily be in the $12,500-$15,000 range (+/- $1-2,000).
Village Manager Announces the Show Will Go On
Village Manager Mark Fitzgerald issued a press release on February 10th, four days after the complaint was filed, stating that the February 16th Primary Election will take place in spite of the issues that have been raised with the apparent illegal certification of Scott Krause's name being placed on the ballot.
Village Attorney Refers Matter to Government Accountability Board
The Village Attorney, Mike Morse, contacted The Vanguard today and said that he had obtained outside legal counsel, which will be at the taxpayer's expense, and it is his position that the Clerk's Office doesn't have the authority to cancel the February 16th Primary Election.
Complaint Forwarded to Government Accountability Board
The Government Accountability Board (GAB) has been forwarded the complaint with the Clerk's Office for a decision.
It is hoped that the GAB will act swiftly and decisively to do the right and legal thing by canceling the February 16th Primary due to the apparent illegal certification of Scott Krause's name being placed on the ballot and to save the taxpayer's some $12-15,000.
What do you think.....
Please let the Village Manager, Village Attorney and Village Clerk know what you think about this matter to save the taxpayers thousands of dollars for what has turned out to be an unnecessary election.
Their contact information is as follows:
Village Manager Mark Fitzgerald (email@example.com)
Village Attorney Mike Morse (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Village Clerk Hintze (email@example.com)