McHenry County clerk encourages residents to file as write-in candidates

20 races in county have fewer candidates than open seats available

A sign directs voters to the right location at the McHenry Township Government Complex, 3703 N. Richmond Road in Johnsburg, on Friday, Nov. 4, 2022. The polls will be open on Election Day from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Eligible McHenry County residents should consider running as a write-in candidate for the April 4 local elections, County Clerk and Recorder Joe Tirio said this week.

He noted that because the seats he referred to have no candidate on the ballot, anyone who runs as a write-in candidate most likely will win the seat.

In a prepared release, Tirio wrote: “If you’ve ever wanted to get involved in local government, there are races on the April 4 election ballot that can be won ‘for the price of a piece of paper and a drive to Woodstock.’ We have more than 20 offices with fewer candidates than open seats. That means you can likely have the seat by just running as a write-in.”

To run as a write-in, a candidate must be qualified for the seat and must file a declaration to run as a write-in at the McHenry County Clerk’s Office by Thursday, Feb. 2. Write-in candidates must meet residency requirements for the seat for which they are running; some races further narrow residency for the vacant seat to a particular part of their jurisdiction.

The declaration can be found on the “Elections” section of the candidate page on the McHenry County Clerk’s Office website at www.McHenryCountyClerkIL.gov.

“Once you’ve filed the declaration, you just need to contact friends, family and neighbors to write your name in on the ballot on April 4,” Tirio said. “If the specter of gathering signatures, knocking on doors and raising funds has kept you from running for office, the bar has been significantly lowered.”

When, not if, the write-in candidate wins, Tirio said, “within five days of the official canvass of votes, you will need to fill out a statement of candidacy, provide a receipt for filing your statement of economic interests and, if you want, sign the optional loyalty oath.”

Seats that are not filled in the election are later appointed by the sitting board. That person must then run for a two-year seat in the next local election to retain the seat.

The races with fewer candidates than open seats are:

Village of Fox River Grove, trustee

Village of Greenwood, trustee

Village of Lakewood, trustee

Village of Oakwood Hills, trustee

Village of Prairie Grove, trustee

Village of Union, trustee

Algonquin Public Library District, trustee

Fox Lake Public Library District, trustee

McHenry Public Library, trustee

McHenry Public Library, trustee (two-year term)

Nippersink Public Library District (Richmond), trustee

River East Public Library District (McHenry), trustee

Marengo Community High School District 154, board member

Richmond-Burton High School District 157, board member (two-year term)

Fox River Grove Grade School District 3, board member (two-year term)

McHenry County Regional Board of Schools, trustee

McHenry County Regional Board of Schools, trustee (four-year term)

Lake County Regional Board of Schools, trustee

Kane County Regional Board of Schools, trustee (two-year term)

Boone/Winnebago County Regional Board of Schools, trustee

Boone/Winnebago County Regional Board of Schools, trustee (four-year term)