Former Utica City Councilman Lou Critelli, now in his 90s, needed 440 signatures in his second round of petition-filling in order to have term limits (back to eight years) placed on the ballot this November. He got 774 signatures. Tuesday morning, Critelli and around a dozen or so supporters walked into city hall with the signatures. An overabundance of signatures didn't make for easy passage.
"I have 60 days that I have to wait before i can certify these," said City Clerk, Michelle George.
Critelli's attorney interpreted the law very diferently.
"Here's where I disagree with you...on paragraph 8, it says that the city clerk shall certify," said Mark Wolber.
With no agreement on the horizon, Critelli's attorney said they're going to ask a NY Supreme Court Justice to answer the question of law.
"So, our position is the city clerk's obligation is to certify these signatures within 20 days, and that the two-month time limit, which is in a separate paragraph, does not apply to the city clerk," said Attorney Wolber. "We're gonna ask the court to compel the city clerk to certify these within 20 days of today's date so the process of beting this on as a referendum."
Wolber is hopeful the issue will go before a State Supreme Court Justice soon enough for them to answer the legal question in time for limits to potentially be placed on this November's ballot.