Dunn says he’s not ready to pull the plug on candidacy
By Annette Newcomb~Editor
The 2013 election season has barely begun and there is already contention with one of the races.
At the onset, it appeared Lakewood School in Twin Lakes was looking at a Feb. 19 primary election with two open seats and five candidates running for the school board: Steve Dunn Sr.; Amanda Hahn, Tammy Ledende, Kathy Ticha and Angie Yttri. Ticha and Ledene have both formerly served on the school board.
Candidate and former school board president Steve Dunn Sr., filed his declaration of candidacy papers, noting his current Lake Geneva address.
At the request of Lakewood School District Administrator Joe Price, the Government Accountability Board investigated the matter and on Jan. 9 returned a letter stating Dunn is not eligible to run for the Twin Lakes Board of Education.
The GAB stated, “…that a candidate for your school board must be a qualified elector at the time of Declaration of Candidacy form is filed, pursuant Wis. Stat. Section 120.06(6)(b)2, in order to be placed on the ballot.”
The GAB went on to explain to be “a qualified elector means the individual must be a resident of the school district for 28 days prior to the filing of the DOC. In school districts with apportioned board seats, candidates must be qualified electors at the time of taking office under Wis. Stat. Section 120.05((1)(d).
However, Dunn says the language in the Declaration of Candidacy says the opposite.
Dunn contends a sentence on the declaration releases him from being a resident of Twin Lakes at the time of the election, but does require him to be a resident by the time he would take office, if elected.
The sentence reads, “…I will meet or will at the time I assume office the applicable age, citizenship, residency and voting qualification requirements, if any, prescribed by the constitutions and laws of the United States and State of Wisconsin and that I will otherwise qualify for office, if nominated and elected.
“I fully intend to move back to Twin Lakes if I am elected. The phrasing says I must be resident if I am elected, not before,”
As of press time Dunn had not be able to speak to his attorney Rod Carter. “I feel very passionate about Lakewood. I have three ways to go with this. First, I could have a judge at the Kenosha County Circuit Court resolve it. Two, run a write in election or three, do nothing,” Dunn said.
Dunn had not been able to talk to his attorney as of press time and as of Monday night was not sure what his course of action would be.
As of now, due to the GAB’s ruling, Lakewood School will not have a primary election. The remaining five candidates will vie for two open chairs during the Tuesday, April 2 spring election. It’s possible if the case goes to the court new ballots would have to be printed, should the court rule Dunn is within his legal rights.
Dunn and Lakewood have a long love/hate relationship.
Dunn served 15 seemingly uneventful years on the school board, five as president, then became the subject of a recall election in April, 2010.
Dunn lost the recall by 100 votes to Kurt Anderson, who is currently board vice president.
Dunn ran unsuccessfully in for re-election in 2011.
The Report will update this story at www.mykenoshacounty.com, should the need arise.