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PINCKNEYVILLE — Two City Council candidates have been removed from the ballot for the upcoming consolidated election after challenges questioned their eligibility to run for office. 

The Pinckneyville Municipal Officers Electoral Board on Friday heard arguments against the eligibility of two nominees for April’s municipal election: Jamie Benbrook, who was running for police commissioner, and Brad Hirte, who was vying for the city’s streets and public improvement commissioner.

Jeffrey Scholebo filed the challenge against Benbrook and provided evidence that Benbrook had not lived in the city for the required 12 months prior to filing.

Tim Simpson challenged Hirte's candidacy. He wanted Hirte disqualified for not writing the complete name for the office he was seeking on his petition. Simpson also cited an error by the notary public on Hirte's packet.

The board voted unanimously on Monday to uphold the complaints.

Mayor Robert Spencer said Tuesday that case law reviewed by the board supported both arguments.

“They are going to be removed from the ballot,” Spencer said, adding that Hirte may be appealing the ruling.

Regarding the ruling in Hirte’s case, Spencer said it came down to the fact that he didn’t put the correct position title on the petition — Spencer said if he had put the correct name even once on one of the pages, it would have cleared him.

Spencer said ballots have not yet been printed, so this decision will not cost taxpayers.

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On Twitter: @ismithreports



Isaac Smith is a reporter covering Jackson County.

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