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CHICAGO, IL -Election mess in Presidential elections in America is almost over, now start the cycle of local elections. In State of Illinois, elections are due on April 6th for Townships, Civic bodied like School board, Library board, Park Districts. December 14th was the last date to file for elections.
Normally candidates are required to have petitions signed by local people saying we support this candidate. Only citizens can sign the petition. If an immigrant signs petition before becoming citizen, it can jeopardize citizenship. It can put you in jail and can get you deported. Most of the positions are non-political but Townships are political. Both prominent parties Democrats and Republicans select their candidates. If a party can find candidates to fill most of the positions, they can nominate them without petitions with due process thru caucus. In Palatine, both Democrats as well as Republicans have their slates.
From beginning till today, Republicans controlled Palatine Township. It will be the first time that Democrats will control township if they win. Democrats have Melissa Ortega for Supervisor, Township Clerk position Tracy Boland, who is already Palatine Library board member. Matt Flamm for Highway Commissioner. Nathenile Groh, Deanna Santmann, Megan Gawlick and Thakar S Basati for Trustee. Basati will be the first South Asian American and first Turbaned Sikh to hold that position if he wins. Palatine has the oldest and largest Gurdwara in mid west but there is not much active participation in politics. Now there is also Swami Narayan temple, so there is plenty of Asian population but not representation in civic bodies. Basati helped recruit Laddi Singh to run for State Representative but she lost. Now there is Turbaned Sikh young man on Library board that Basati helped appoint. Basati’ older daughter Navreet is School Board member in Lombard. Basati ran for Township clerk in 2005, but wasn’t really ready and lost. Now demographics have changed a lot. Continuously, Democrats are winning in all Presidential elections here. For last 6 elections, all Congressman here have been Democrats.
Even before the Constitution of America, America was divided into 6X6 square miles to be called Township. No matter what the population is, it will have 4 Trustees, one Supervisor, one Clerk, one Assessor. To be Assessor, you have to pass special test. Townships stay within county limits. A township can have more than 1 city. In Illinois, there are 1400 townships. And Cook County has 29. City of Chicago has none. There are 17 other counties that have no township. Townships usually take care of unincorporated areas. They run food pantries, Property tax appeals, handicap parking sticker, transportation services for Senior Citizens,, medical help, reduced fare card, general assistant and needy people help. For all these services, they tax local residents. Townships can abolish some positions like highway commissioner.
There are various ways to do election propaganda. Most effective is door to door canvassing. Data is available from last elections about who voted Democrat or Republicans. That data helps us identify which doors to knock on and talk to people to convince to vote. In local elections, people don’t take much interest in voting, some think they aren’t important. Actually local elections are very important. These people decide your taxes and projects that will affect your living, Schools, parks and libraries. Other method of canvassing is phone bank, where phone calls are made to convince people to vote for your candidate and make sure they vote. Now text messaging and emails are also used.
Then there is always fundraising. You need money to run for all expenses. People send in contributions. They aren’t tax deductible. Funding is very well watched by IRS. Election funds can only be used for election related activities and you have to file with IRS regularly coming in and outgoing funds. Printed material is sent to houses to provide information regarding objectives and why they should vote for you. We are lucky yo have joint account. All money collected for all township candidates is going into that account. If anyone wants to help Basati win in this election, they can write check to Democrats for Palatine Township or D4PT and mail to Basati 746 N Victoria Dr, Palatine, Il 60074. Donations can also be send to D4PT.org or to Actblue.org. No money should be accepted from out of America due to strict laws. There are various ways to vote. People can ask for mail in votes. For Cook County residents they can go to www.CookCounty.gov/votebymail. You can even request now and voting starts in February. Then you can always do early voting or the day of voting. We highly recommend vote by mail and drop in at early voting site.
For any involvement in elections or to get more info regarding elections please contact Basati at [email protected] or by phone 847-736-6092.