The City of Wheaton on Thursday won its lawsuit against the DuPage County Election Commission and former City Council candidate Frank Garcia, confirming the city's decision that Garcia does not qualify to run for office.
Wheaton's municipal electoral board ruled last month that Garcia was ineligible to run for City Council because he was not a registered voter in the city of Wheaton when he filed Dec. 26 and therefore not considered a Wheaton resident. The decision came after candidate John Prendiville filed an objection against Garcia because of his voter registration status and residency.
Following the city's decision, Garcia filed with the DuPage County Election Commission to run as a write-in candidate for the seat. The city filed suit against the Election Commission and Garcia last week, asking that the courts confirm he is ineligible to run as a write-in candidate.
City attorney Ken Florey said the judge sided with the city, as a resident's voting location is a top indicator of his or her residency. "It'd be a confusion among voters (if he were elected) because he couldn't be seated (on the Council)," he said.
Wheaton Mayor Mike Gresk said Garcia meant well in his plans, "But he wasn't qualified, by state statute, to hold an elected (position) in the City of Wheaton," he said. "I hope he stays active in the community. There are many, many ways to do (that) and I hope he can channel his energy to something else."
According to the City of Wheaton, candidates must be registered voters in the City of Wheaton and have lived within city limits for at least one year. Garcia said he registered to vote in Wheaton in early January. Until then, he was a registered voter in Naperville.
Thor Saline, an unopposed candidate for City Council in the East District, is serving as the interim At-Large councilman until after the election. The seat became vacant when Jeanne Ives resigned to take her post as state representative in the 42nd District. Former councilman and mayoral candidate John Prendiville is the only candidate for the seat.
Saline, John Rutledge (Incumbent, South District) and Todd Scalzo (Incumbent, West District) are running unopposed for their seats. In the for the seat including Alberta Adamson, J.T. Del Alcazar, Ted Rodgers and incumbent Phil Suess.
The consolidated election will be April 9.
- Election Central: Wheaton City Council
- City Council Candidate: John Prendiville
- East District Candidate Appointed Interim Councilman
- City Council Candidate Removed From Ballot
- City Council Candidate Objects to Opponent's Eligibility