It’s below most people’s radar screens, but Monday may reveal if any citizens in the five largest McHenry County townships have been tempted by the relatively large salaries paid to full and some part-time township officials.
Even the township trustee positions—four per township—pay in the neighborhood of $100 a meeting in most townships I checked. Not bad pay for an evening meeting in a recession. And a good starting point for a Young Republican.
And the township clerks’ salaries.
One could send a kid to college on this part-time job’s salary in the larger townships.
Republican incumbents have bravely decided to allow themselves to be challenged in open primaries. The numbers of signatures required to get on the ballot is minuscule. One-half of one percent.
Four years ago here are the numbers of people who in the April township elections:
Algonquin – 7,986
Dorr – 2,977
Grafton – 4,872
McHenry – 6,756
Nunda – 4,884
It’s these numbers that one would multiply .005 by in order to find the number of signatures required on a petition. If my multiplication is correct, the minimum number of signatures needed would be
Algonquin – 40
Dorr – 15
Grafton – 25
McHenry – 34
Nunda – 25
None is an overwhelming burden, but, for those thinking of running, I would suggest you get at least twice or even three times as many signatures as are required.
Chicago political tactics have invaded McHenry County and it is quite possible that an opponent may challenge your petitions. You may win the challenge, but it will probably cost you legal fees and it will certainly distract you from the short campaign.
And when you turn your petitions in, make certain they are numbered at the bottom and stapled together with the other stuff you need to file. And, if you don’t know what that other stuff is, don’t file on Monday. Wait until you get your act together. The end of filing isn’t until the afternoon of 15th.
Three years ago only two townships held primary elections. Algonquin was willing, but there were no challengers. The number who voted in the 2005 GOP primaries follow:
Algonquin – None needed because there was no opposition
McHenry – 2,871, primary for road commissioner only.
Nunda – 418, primary for township trustee only
Democrats are not holding any primary elections. They can, however, hold township caucuses. If such candidates pop up, I would expect Republicans to emphasize that their candidates were chosen in an open primary, while the Democrats did otherwise (and I’m sure someone can come up with better words).
In addition to townships, city officials in Crystal Lake and Woodstock will be filing for office. In both instances, if more than twice the number of candidates file for the offices which are open, there will be a primary election will be held at the same time as the township primary.
Any township with an active primary election will be prime campaign territory for Crystal Lake or Woodstock city council candidates, because the turnout there would be expected to be higher than elsewhere.
The primary election will occur on February 24, 2009.