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Hearing On Mayor's Nominating Petition Delayed

Mike Miletich

A hearing to review an objection to Mayor Tari Renner's nominating petitions has been delayed to later this week.

The original hearing Monday morning was stopped after multiple citizens called out the Bloomington Election Commission for violations of the Open Meetings Act.

Bloomington Attorney Robert Day wanted the hearing to run as planned, but Commission Chair Denise Williams delayed the session after a 15 minute recess. Day requested a Bloomington Police officer stand outside the hearing to keep peace in the room. A McLean County Sheriff deputy also responded. 

Elizabeth Gruber of Bloomington said  Day's response to the public comments was unprofessional.

"Thank heavens the lady listened to other people and went ahead and canceled the meeting," said Gruber. "But, I'm embarrassed that we're paying an attorney that sat there and ridiculed the citizens when he was totally in error." 

Day said there were multiple items missing in order to hold an open meeting. 

"The agenda itself wasn't put on the website," said Day. "We think, just so there aren't any objections to that fact, it would be better to just reschedule the meeting to Thursday."

Kevin Gerrard, who filed the objection against the Mayor, attempted to amend his complaint after the hearing had begun. He was told that wasn't possible. At that point, Gerrard turned to the mayor and said "You're an a-----e."  

Renner said he has no problem with the delay in order for the Commission to follow all legal procedures. Gerrard declined comment on his objection or today's hearing.  

Nominating petitions, with voter signatures, are necessary for candidates to be placed on the ballot. 

Mike joined GLT's staff as a student reporter in February of 2016 having worked previously as a reporter at Illinois State University's student radio station, 103.3 WZND. He acted as a director for the WZND newsroom for two years. Mike was also seen as a reporter, producer, and anchor at TV-10 News. He graduated with a bachelor's degree in broadcast journalism in May of 2017 before starting his post-graduate career with the Public Affairs Reporting Masters Program at University of Illinois Springfield.
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