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Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Ind. Courts - COA will hear oral arguments today in dispute over Terre Haute mayor's office

As noted in the earlier entry this morning, the Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments at 1 PM today in the dispute over the Terre Haute mayoral election. Here is a long list of earlier ILB entries containing "Kevin D. Burke.")

Here is a story from MyWabashValley.com

The dispute over Terre Haute's mayoral election goes back to court Tuesday. Indiana's Court of Appeals will hear arguments over whether Mayor Duke Bennett should stay in office.

After Duke Bennett won November's Terre Haute mayoral election over incumbent Kevin Burke, Burke went to court to contest Bennett's eligibility based on the Hatch Act. The Hatch Act is a law that prevents some federally funded employees from running for elected office.

While Bennett campaigned he kept his job at Hamilton Center, which receives federal funds for a Head Start program. Bennett told us in November his job never dealt with those funds, but still checked his Hatch Act eligibility anyway. * * *

By December 21, it was determined that Hamilton Center had used federal funds to pay about 2% of Bennett's salary. So Judge David Bolk ruled that Bennett had unintentionally violated the Hatch Act. But Bolk also ruled Bennett could take office, because the Hatch Act only applies to candidates and politicians in office.

Because Burke had waited until after the election to go to court, Bennett was no longer a candidate and Bennett would not take office until January 1, days after resigning from his job at Hamilton Center.

Burke appealed to Indiana's Supreme Court, which refused to consider the case until it goes through Indiana's Court of Appeals.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on July 8, 2008 07:24 AM
Posted to Upcoming Oral Arguments