Murrysville residents, not municipality, can circulate petitions for ballot inclusion
Murrysville residents will be responsible for circulating any petition regarding drilling leases under the community park, despite information released earlier this month by the Westmoreland County Election Bureau.
Under the municipal home charter, residents can circulate a petition to put a referendum on the November ballot regarding any enacted ordinance, solicitor George Kotjarapoglus. However, some residents who called the election bureau for direction were told that the municipality had already filed for a referendum.
“They were told they could not do it — that we were doing it,” Councilman Jeff Kepler said. “There seems to be some confusion between the election bureau.”
Jim Montini, director of the election bureau, said there was no confusion. Murrysville officials had inquired about placing a referendum on the ballot, Montini said. Once the county solicitor realized that Murrysville is governed by a home-rule charter, the county's involvement was nil, Montini said.
That charter explains that residents are permitted to circulate a petition to put a yes-no referendum question on an election ballot if it is in response to an act of legislation.
“It's no question that the charter authorizes it,” Kotjarapoglus said. “It's nothing that we prepare and circulate on our own. It has to be a citizen's initiative.”
Resident Linda Marts said she initially was told that there was a referendum question filed by the municipality but later received a call saying that wasn't true.
Murrysville officials said they agree that the process is complicated, but they are prohibited from taking the lead.
“It would be easier for us to initiate it,” Councilman Dave Perry said. “But the charter is pretty clear.”
Montini said residents interested in circulating a petition should rely on the municipality for direction.
Daveen Rae Kurutz is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8627, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- PTOs, officials welcome waiver of fees for volunteers
- Murrysville tattoo parlor to host St. Jude fundraiser
- Murrysville man won’t be charged for slitting pit bull’s throat
- Franklin Regional Soccer Boosters’ 5K set for Aug. 22
- Turtle Creek short-line rail marks 125th anniversary
- Delmont council notes: Two new officers hired, smoke testing to take place
- ‘Wipes out’: Nonflushable paper products causing clogging issues
- Photo gallery: ‘Water Day’ at Goddard School in Murrysville