January 10, 2006

Victory! Home Rule in Rockford not on the March Ballot.

Home Rule in Rockford, Illinois had its first real battle last night. The City Council voted on whether or not to place Home Rule on the March ballot.

” Rockford aldermen voted 9-5 against placing the question on the March 21 ballot.”

The war isn’t won, but this is a nice victory for anyone against Home Rule. Why? Because back in 1983 when Home Rule was voted out, the city council forced the proponents to collect the signatures of the citizens to get it on the ballot. When Empower Rockford and Mayor Larry Morrison decided they wanted to bring Home Rule back; instead of getting the signatures, they wanted just to have the city council add the referendum. This saved them from trying to get the signature of 10% of the registered voters in the city. Thanks to the city council, that is exactly what Empower Rockford will have to do, collect signatures.

In one of my earlier posts on Home Rule, I said that they would need to collect 15,012 signatures to have this added to the ballot. This was a huge miscalculation on my behalf. I will admit I did not double check that figure and just based it off the population of Rockford. That is something I should have known better then to do. Apparently, out of the 150,124 citizens in Rockford, only about 80,000 are registered voters. Thus, Empower Rockford only needs 8,000 signatures. That is still a daunting task. Personally, I’d like to see them not get the signatures, but if they do, at least it would be on the ballot in the same manner it was back in 1983.

There was another issue in the article that disturbed me, how the aldermen voted.

” The vote was almost entirely along party lines with the council’s eight Democrats voting against a referendum on home rule and five of the six Republican aldermen voting for it.”

This surprises me. Having Republicans and Democrats going against party lines would be like expecting a starving lion not to attack a wounded zebra. It’s not going to happen. What surprises me is what the party lines where. I always thought Republicans were anti-big government. Home Rule gives you big government. Why would the republicans want this then? Isn’t Home Rule almost the embodiment of taking the power away from the people so that the politicians can dictate to us with out a vote? I figured this would be the other way with possibly one or two democrats voting No.

Either way I’m glad the council voted no. I’ll take the victory. Now if we can only win the war.

For other posts on Home Rule see the Home Rule Archive.

Posted by Contagion in Home Rule at January 10, 2006 06:31 AM | TrackBack

One for the good guys!

It surprised me about what parties voted for what, too, then I remembered that I live in Illinois where R. and D. honestly *doesn't* matter: what does matter is that Conservatives won *this* one. :^)

Posted by: Wes at January 10, 2006 02:58 PM

Those damn liberals, lmao ;). I'm glad it seems to be going the way you want it. I hate that idea also.

Posted by: talulazephyr at January 10, 2006 04:45 PM

Yay and hooray!

Posted by: Ogre at January 11, 2006 02:48 PM