Workers at the Crawford County Board of Elections are in the process of certifying 2,604 signatures on a petition seeking a referendum vote on wind energy in Crawford County.
“It’s like any other petition; we’re going through our due diligence, looking up each individual’s signature and verifying that,” said Kim Rudd, director of the board of elections. “It’s just time-consuming.”
On May 5, commissioners passed a resolution blocking wind farm development in all unincorporated areas of the county, effectively barring construction of Honey Creek Wind, Apex Clean Energy’s planned 300-megawatt industrial wind farm.
But under the terms of Senate Bill 52, which became law in July, wind farm supporters had until June 6 to submit petitions forcing a November referendum vote on the issue, which could overturn the commissioners’ action.
At a special commissioners meeting, Tyler Fehrman of Honey Creek Action submitted a thick stack of petitions he said had been signed by 2,604 people.
Commissioners then handed the petitions over to the elections board for verification.
A final decision on whether to certify the petitions isn’t expected to be made until the election board’s August meeting, Crawford County Prosecutor Matt Crall said. The date for that meeting will be set during the board’s July meeting.
The board will vote on whether to certify the petitions at the same time it decides whether to certify any other issues submitted for consideration on the November general election ballot.
“Aug. 10 is the filing deadline for the November election, so nothing will be certified until after that date,” Rudd said. The deadline for certifying issues is Aug. 22, so “sometime between the 10th and the 22nd of August, we’ll certify.”
The process of checking each signature is “pretty time-consuming,” Crall said. “And they have an election in August that I think everyone’s forgotten about.”
On Aug. 2, voters across Ohio will choose their state central committee members and nominate candidates for state senator and state representative.
In Crawford County, Democrats will choose between Tony Eufinger and Randy Weston for 26th District state central committee man and between Kathleen A. Nalley and Carolyn Weston for committee woman. Republicans will choose between Charles A. Knight, Raymond Metzger and Jonathan Zucker for committee man. Lisa Cooper faces no opposition in her bid for Republican committee woman.
Incumbent state Rep. Riordan T. McClain is running unopposed in the Republican primary for his 87th district seat and will face no Democratic challenger this fall.
Three local liquor options also will be decided on Aug. 2 – two for Buehler’s in Galion and one for Mi Cerrito Mexican Restaurant in Crestline.
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