“Thank God they understood,” Batista told the Journal-News at the time. “They knew this problem has been (existing) for a long time.”
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Matthew Von Stein, now on Hamilton City Council, lost the chance to run in 2013 because of the issue, and the three council incumbents faced no challenger in that race. Although Von Stein later failed to sign the same line two years later, he did sign another part of the page and officials approved his candidacy. He captured the second-most votes in the 2015 race to join the council.
This week, Batista said he was in favor of the charter change.
“I am in favor — 100 percent,” Batista said.
Hamilton city Clerk Nick Garuckas recently told city council: “The Butler County Board of Elections has told us numerous times that there is constantly errors on our application about people filling them out. It’s confusing. People turn in the wrong thing. They hand them in to me. I’m not the election board.”
Garuckas added: “The only thing we’re doing is taking … this form, we’re getting it out of the charter, and we’re going to put in one line that just says, ‘We’re using the form that the county uses.’”
The charter amendment also changes the deadline for city candidates to file their petitions from the current 75 days before the election to 90 days before Election Day, bringing the city in line with state law and almost all governments in Butler County, except Middletown.