August 24, 2009
On Monday, August 10, NYC CAN began a comprehensive review of the nearly 26,000 signatures invalidated by the New York City Board of Elections and City Clerk. With 26,003 signatures accepted as valid by the City, at least 3,997 additional signatures were needed to exceed the threshold of 30,000 signatures. 10 days, 50 volunteers and 1,000 man-hours later, we are thrilled to report we have so far discovered 6,924 signatures we will argue were wrongly invalidated.
In addition, the Court has granted an extension allowing us to complete our review of 6 unfinished volumes. We anticipate having well over 7,000 additional valid signatures once the review is complete. The 50+ individuals who helped conduct the review take great pride in knowing their work has stopped the silencing of 7,000 New York City voters and allowed their voices to be heard.
On Friday, August 28, we must serve a Bill of Particulars listing all signatures we argue should be deemed valid by the Court. Special Referee Louis Crespo will begin a line-by-line review of the disputed signatures on Tuesday, September 8, and is scheduled to complete his review by Friday, September 18.
Looking ahead, NYC CAN will submit an additional 28,000 signatures on September 3 to satisfy the requirement of 15,000 valid signatures needed to override the City Council's failure to act on the petition. The 60-day period for the City Council to approve the referendum's placement on the ballot ended today, August 24, 2009. If NYC CAN wins in court, the submission of 15,000 more valid signatures will guarantee the referendum's placement on the ballot.
Legal proceedings are expected to last through the month of September, by which time a favorable determination from the Court is needed in order for the referendum to be placed on this November's ballot. Over the last 25 years six ballot initiatives have been attempted in New York City. Only one has made it on the ballot: the 1993 initiative to limit New York City elected officials to two terms in office, whose supporters also had to go to court to prove the initiative legal before passage by the voters, and which was nevertheless undone by the City Council last year. We will battle against all odds to see that the initiative to establish a critically needed reinvestigation of 9/11 does not suffer the same fate as past ballot initiatives.
Thinkers think and talkers talk. Patriots ACT.