PRESS RELEASE: County Clerk Announces Availability of 2016 Candidate Filing Forms

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

August 27, 2015

Contact: Gordy Hulten (217.384.3720)

County Clerk Announces Availability of 2016 Candidate Filing Forms

URBANA, IL – Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten announced today the availability, both online and in his office, of petitions, various other candidate forms, 2016 election deadlines and information for those interested in becoming candidates for the Republican and Democratic Parties for Countywide, County Board and Precinct offices.

“These Champaign County-specific forms will hopefully be an aid to those interested in running for County and Precinct positions,” said Hulten. “I am encouraging everyone who is considering a run for office to use these forms and other resources to ensure their paperwork is properly prepared for filing.”

The petition circulation period begins Tuesday, September 1, 2015 for Republican and Democratic candidates seeking nomination at the March 15, 2016 General Primary Election. The nominating Petition, Statement of Candidacy and Loyalty Oath form, as well as various guides and instructions for filing, will be available both online at www.champaigncountyclerk.com and at the office of Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten, 1776 E. Washington St., Urbana.

The County offices for which nominations will be made at the General Primary Election are Auditor, Circuit Clerk, Coroner, Recorder of Deeds and State’s Attorney, one full term County Board member for each of the eleven districts and one additional unexpired term County Board member for District 8. Also, both the Republican and Democratic Parties will elect Precinct Committeeman at the General Primary Election.

The minimum number of signatures required for Republican candidates for countywide office is 210. For Democratic countywide candidates, the minimum number of signatures required is 153. For County Board candidates the signature requirements vary based on District and party affiliation, and range from six to 30. For all Precinct Committeeman candidates from either established Party, the minimum number of signatures is 10.

The filing period for petitions and other forms is Monday, November 23 through Monday, November 30, 2015, not including County holidays. Candidates for Countywide, County Board and Precinct Committeeman positions will file their documents at the office of Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten, 1776 E. Washington St., Urbana, IL.

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PRESS RELEASE: Seminar on Open Government for Local Officials and Public Announced

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 11, 2015
Contact: Gordy Hulten (217.384.3720)

Seminar on Open Government for Local Officials and Public Announced

URBANA, IL – Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten announced today a public seminar for local officials on the Illinois Freedom of Information Act and Open Meetings Act, co-hosted by State’s Attorney Julia Rietz, and featuring the Illinois Attorney General’s Public Access Counselor Sarah Pratt on Wednesday, May 20, 2015 from 2:30 PM to 4:30 PM at the Champaign Public Library.

“Understanding and complying with the State of Illinois’ Freedom of Information Act and Open Meetings Act is an important part of our duties as public officials,” said Hulten. “State’s Attorney Rietz and I try to be a resource to our officials and the public, but we’re very excited to have the Public Access Counselor available as a resource as well.”

The seminar will begin at 2:30 PM on Wednesday, May 20, 2015, in the Robeson Pavilion Rooms A & B at the Champaign Public Library, 200 W. Green Street, Champaign. There will be a presentation by the Illinois Attorney General’s Public Access Counselor, followed by time for questions and answers from local officials and the public. All local officials are invited to attend, and the seminar is open to the public and media. There are a limited number of seats for this program, and RSVPs are requested to Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten at mail@champaigncountyclerk.com or 217-384-3724.

Individuals with questions or those seeking more information should contact Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten at 217-384-3720 or email mail@champaigncountyclerk.com.

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PRESS RELASE: County Clerk Gordy Hulten Announces Beginning of Absentee Ballot Requests

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 6, 2014
Contact: Gordy Hulten (217.384.3720)

County Clerk Gordy Hulten Announces Beginning of Absentee Ballot Requests

URBANA, IL – Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten announced that the period to request an absentee ballot for the November 4, 2014 General Election begins today, Wednesday, August 6.
“Absentee voting is now available in Illinois with no excuse necessary,” said Hulten. “Voters can begin requesting absentee ballots today, online through our website, by phone, mail or in person, for any reason, and take advantage of the convenience of voting by mail.”

Registered voters can request to vote by mail by visiting www.champaigncountyclerk.com/abr/ and filling out the secure online request form, by calling the County Clerk’s office at 217-384-3724 or by emailing mail@champaigncountyclerk.com. Ballot requests will be fulfilled beginning September 25, 2014, as required by statute.

Voters with questions may contact Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten at 217-384-3724, or by email at mail@champaigncountyclerk.com.

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Statement on Same-Sex Marriage

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

February 26, 2014

Contact: Gordy Hulten (217.384.3720)

Same-Sex Marriage In Champaign County

URBANA, IL – Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten today issued the following statement on same-sex marriage in Champaign County:

“On Friday, federal judge Sharon Johnson Coleman held that the Illinois statute banning marriage for same-sex couples is unconstitutional and violates the Fourteenth Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause. The Illinois Attorney General and the Cook County Clerk were parties to the suit. The precise effect of the ruling on other Illinois counties is unclear. However, after consulting with State’s Attorney Julia Rietz, I have come to the conclusion that the rationale of the case applies to all citizens of Illinois and that Champaign County residents should have no fewer Constitutional rights than those in Cook County. Furthermore, given the ruling, denying a license to a same sex couple would provide no benefit to the County and would likely result in litigation at taxpayer expense.

“Therefore, effective immediately, the Champaign County Clerk’s office will issue marriage licenses to same sex applicants, in accordance with the 14th Amendment, and the Illinois and United States Constitutions.”

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Press Release: Considering Alternative Election Equipment for Early Voting

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 11, 2013

Contact: Gordy Hulten (217.384.3720)

 County Clerk Gordy Hulten Considering Alternative Election Equipment for Early Voting

 

URBANA, IL – Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten today announced his office is considering acquiring alternative election tabulators to allow Champaign County voters more access, convenience and choices for Early Voting.

“Our goal has been to aggressively expand and promote opportunities for Early Voting in Champaign County,” said Hulten. “With our new Early Voting sites proving to be so popular last year, we’re now considering different election equipment that will allow any registered voter in Champaign County to vote early, in person, at any one of eight different locations.”

To facilitate greater flexibility and convenience for Champaign County voters, County Clerk Gordy Hulten is considering a new model of Optical Scan tabulator that can process ballots that would be issued to any voter in Champaign County, whereas current equipment is limited to ballots from no more than ten precincts each.  The new equipment being considered is compatible with existing software used in the County Clerk’s office to create ballots, program elections and combine tabulated results and would not necessitate using different ballots than those used for absentee voting or on Election Day.  The new tabulator models are more user-friendly for voters, and each Early Voting location would be able to issue on-demand and tabulate the correct ballot for any validly registered voter in Champaign County.

“We learned in 2012 that some voters appreciate the convenience of Early Voting, but sometimes the location assigned to them based on their voter registration address wasn’t convenient,” said Hulten.  “Now, if someone lives in Mahomet but works on the University of Illinois campus, they can take advantage of that Early Voting location if they so choose.”

In 2012, for the first time, Early Voting was conducted at locations other than the County Clerk’s office. Hulten introduced new locations in the Illini Union in Urbana, Spalding Recreation Center and Meadowbrook Community Church in Champaign, Grace Church of Mahomet, Rantoul Recreation Center, St. Joseph Village Annex and the Tolono Public Library.  Each new site was available only to voters living in precincts in close proximity, with the County Clerk’s office available as an Early Voting location for all Champaign County Voters.  The November 2012 General Election saw more than 25 percent of Champaign County voters vote Early or Absentee.

“We take seriously the feedback we get from voters on improvements to the services we provide,” said Hulten. “Allowing any registered voter in Champaign County to vote at any Early Voting location is something many asked for in 2012 but have been unable to provide until now.  We would like to have this capability in place for the March 18, 2014 Primary Election.”

County Clerk Gordy Hulten has a demonstration unit of the tabulator being considered for use in Champaign County, and is conducting a series of public events to provide voters an opportunity to use and test, and for the Clerk’s office to solicit feedback.  The schedule of events is:

  • 9/12/2013, 9-10 AM: Champaign County Farm Bureau, 801 Country Fair Drive, Champaign IL 61821
  • 10/16/2013, 10-11 AM: Urbana Free Library, 210 West Green, Urbana IL 61801
  • 10/17/2013, 10-11 AM: Tolono Public Library, 111 East Main Street, Tolono IL 61880
  • 10/22/2013, 10:30 – 11:30 AM: Douglass Branch Champaign Public Library, 504 East Grove Street, Champaign IL 61820
  • 10/22/2013, 6-7 PM: St. Joseph Village Meeting, 207 East Lincoln, St. Joseph IL 61873
  • 10/23/2013, 10:30-11:30 AM: Champaign Public Library-Main, 200 West Green Street, Champaign IL 61820
  • 11/12/2013: 5:30-6:30 PM: Rantoul Village Meeting, 333 South Tanner Street, Rantoul IL 61866
  • 11/26/2013: 5-6 PM: Mahomet Village Meeting, 503 East Main Street, Mahomet IL 61853

Voters who cannot make any of the scheduled events but who have questions, concerns or feedback should contact Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten at (217) 384-3724 or mail@champaigncountyclerk.com.

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High School Mock Election

This week, we were excited to work with eight public high schools in Champaign County and the League of Women Voters to conduct a be able to conduct a mock election for high school students.  We prepared ballots containing the appropriate Federal and State offices for the districts that roughly matched the territory of the school districts, and worked with each school on appropriate referenda.  We provided ballots, tabulators, ballot boxes, voting booths, privacy covers, pens, “I Voted” stickers and other supplies in an effort to make the voting experience for students as similar as possible to real voting.

Voting was conducted October 16, 17 and 18 at each school, with election judge services provides by volunteers from the LWV, and in some cases, other students. We operated each school as its own precinct, so we could tally results separately for each school and then combine.  We had excellent participation with 3,080 students voting countywide.  Results are:

This was the largest mock election we’ve ever done, and I hope the LWV and schools enjoyed it as much as we did.  We’re already looking forward to the next one.

Press Release: County Clerk Gordy Hulten Announces, Demonstrates Poll Books For Upcoming Election

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 11, 2012

Contact: Gordy Hulten (217.384.3720)

URBANA, IL – Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten announced and demonstrated today new electronic poll books that will be used to more accurately and quickly check in voters at polling places on Election Day.

“We are expecting record voter turnout in Champaign County for this year’s General Election,” said Hulten, “We are excited that we will be able to offer more efficient, accurate voter check-in at each of our 100 polling places.”

Electronic Poll Books are laptop computers loaded with a special program used to search for and process individual voters registered at a given precinct.  When a voter enters a polling place, Election Judges will use the Poll Books to search for the voter by name, address or birth date, find the correct voter’s record, use the software to verify the voter’s registration information and identify the correct ballot to be issued to the voter.

Each of Champaign County’s 100 Election Day polling places will have at least two Poll Books, staffed by trained and certified Election Judges.  All expenses related to the Poll Book laptop hardware and other related equipment was covered by a Help America Vote Act grant at no expense to Champaign County taxpayers.  The software program running on each Poll Book was programmed in-house, by County Clerk staff, and does not rely on an expensive vendor-provided solution, which can cost $300,000 or more with significant annual licensing expenses.  In addition, the use of Poll Books will result in significant savings of printing expenses related to the old system of paper ballot applications, and enormous labor costs related to binding and preparing over 120,000 applications for use on Election Day.

“Poll Books will provide improved service to our Election Day voters, easier processing of voters for our Election Judges, improved accuracy and security for our office, at no initial expense and with real ongoing savings for County taxpayers,” said Hulten.

Voters are encouraged to visit the Champaign County Clerk’s office for a demonstration.  Those with questions or seeking more information about Champaign County’s use of Poll Books are encouraged to contact Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten at 217-384-3720 or email mail@champaigncountyclerk.com.

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Press Release: Absentee Voting Opens Tomorrow

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 26, 2012

Contact: Gordy Hulten (217.384.3720)

County Clerk Gordy Hulten Announces

Opening of Absentee Voting Tomorrow

URBANA, IL – Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten announced today that the period for absentee voting for the November 6, 2012 General Election will open tomorrow, Thursday, September 27.

“Absentee voting is now available in Illinois with no excuse necessary,” said Hulten.  “Voters can begin absentee voting tomorrow, by mail or in person, for any reason, and take advantage of the convenience.”

Registered voters can request to vote by mail by visiting www.champaigncountyclerk.com/abr/ and filling out the secure online request form for an absentee ballot, or by calling the County Clerk’s office at 217-384-3724, or by emailing mail@champaigncountyclerk.com.  Registered voters may also vote absentee in-person, at the office of Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten, 1776 E. Washington Street in Urbana, from 8 AM to 4:30 PM weekdays.

Voters with questions may contact Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten at 217-384-3724, or by email at mail@champaigncountyclerk.com.

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Press Release: County Clerk Announces Sample Ballots Available for General Election

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 20, 2012

Contact: Gordy Hulten (217.384.3720)

County Clerk Announces Sample Ballots Available for General Election

URBANA, IL – Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten announced today that sample ballots are now available for the November 6 General Election.

“Sample ballots are a useful tool for voters to begin educating themselves about districts, candidates and referenda on which they will be voting,” said Hulten.  “Especially in this first election after redistricting, voters who are unfamiliar with new districts and candidates can get an early feel for the decisions that they will make when voting.”

Sample ballots are available online at www.champaigncountyclerk.com. Voters should use the link titled, “Check Your Voter Registration Status” to access their individual sample ballot as well as information about their voting districts, polling place, and early voting information including options for early voting locations.  Sample ballots are also available at the office of Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten.

Voters with questions may contact Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten at 217-384-3724, or by email at mail@champaigncountyclerk.com.

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Township Ballot Questions

From a statement released a few minutes ago:

URBANA, IL – Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten today announced that despite formatting improprieties, one advisory question will appear on the November 6, 2012 General Election ballot for City of Champaign Township voters and two advisory questions will appear on the ballot for Cunningham Township voters.

            The referenda, as submitted by electors at their respective Township’s Annual Meetings, are problematic because they don’t conform to the requirements of the Election Code of Illinois.  Specifically, the referenda are not phrased as questions but rather as a series of editorial statements, and do not lend themselves to the standard ‘yes’ or ‘no’ responses required for ballot questions, as required by 10 ILCS 5/16-7.  When the questions were ratified by their respective Township Boards last month, the issue of non-conformity was raised.

“While responsibility as the Election Authority for Champaign County includes the ability to reject non-conforming ballot questions, in the end we decided that these particular non-binding, advisory referenda posed no significant threat to the integrity of the ballot as a whole, or to the election process,” said Hulten. “Therefore, in the interest of increased ballot access and the general principle of letting voters decide, the referenda will appear on the ballot.”