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Judge upholds New Castle mayor's election

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A special judge in Henry County has dismissed a challenge to the New Castle mayor’s election, finding that mayor-elect Greg York is able to become the city’s top executive because he didn’t violate the state’s residency requirement by keeping two homes and splitting where he spent his time.

In a decision Monday, Special Judge Linda Ralu Wolf in Henry Circuit Court upheld York’s election on Nov. 8 and found he can take office at the start of the year. The ruling came about a week after Wolf, a Delaware County judge, heard arguments as to whether York met residency requirements to be mayor because he owned a home just outside the city limits and split his time between that residence and a longtime home on 11th Street inside New Castle.

York obtained 75 percent of the general election vote, securing 2,655 votes compared to the 628 received by John Mark Nipp and 226 received by Debra Baker. Nipp chose to contest the results, arguing that York isn't a city resident and doesn't meet requirements to be mayor.

 But the special judge found that Nipp and his attorney, Jeffrey Bell, fell “far short” of meeting the burden of proof to demonstrate York isn’t an eligible city resident. She rejected the idea that voters had “thrown away” their votes by casting a ballot for York on Election Day.

"A more plausible inference from York's overwhelming electoral success is that the voters, having heard the evidence of York's residency in New Castle and the arguments over it, decided that the evidence of York's intent and conduct and his long and deep connections to the community showed that he was a lawful resident of New Castle and eligible to serve as their mayor," Wolf wrote.

Nothing in state law prohibits a person from owning more than one home and having to abandon another residence when they seek public office, she wrote. Evidence shows that York continued paying property taxes, voted using that address, and kept personal belongings at that 11th St. home.

This is one of many election-related challenges that have surfaced statewide in the past year focusing on Indiana’s residency requirement. That has been an issue in the court challenges involving Indiana Secretary of State Charlie White, who faces criminal charges relating to his voter registration at an address where he allegedly didn’t reside. Hamilton Superior Judge Steven Nation on Monday declined to dismiss the criminal case against White, and it continues along with the civil suit challenging White’s ability to hold office as a result of his voter registration information.

 

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  1. I'm not sure what's more depressing: the fact that people would pay $35,000 per year to attend an unaccredited law school, or the fact that the same people "are hanging in there and willing to follow the dean’s lead in going forward" after the same school fails to gain accreditation, rendering their $70,000 and counting education worthless. Maybe it's a good thing these people can't sit for the bar.

  2. Such is not uncommon on law school startups. Students and faculty should tap Bruce Green, city attorney of Lufkin, Texas. He led a group of studnets and faculty and sued the ABA as a law student. He knows the ropes, has advised other law school startups. Very astute and principled attorney of unpopular clients, at least in his past, before Lufkin tapped him to run their show.

  3. Not that having the appellate records on Odyssey won't be welcome or useful, but I would rather they first bring in the stray counties that aren't yet connected on the trial court level.

  4. Aristotle said 350 bc: "The most hated sort, and with the greatest reason, is usury, which makes a gain out of money itself, and not from the natural object of it. For money was intended to be used in exchange, but not to increase at interest. And this term interest, which means the birth of money from money, is applied to the breeding of money because the offspring resembles the parent. Wherefore of an modes of getting wealth this is the most unnatural.

  5. Oh yes, lifetime tenure. The Founders gave that to the federal judges .... at that time no federal district courts existed .... so we are talking the Supreme Court justices only in context ....so that they could rule against traditional marriage and for the other pet projects of the sixties generation. Right. Hmmmm, but I must admit, there is something from that time frame that seems to recommend itself in this context ..... on yes, from a document the Founders penned in 1776: " He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good."

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