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Ald. Burnett Might Lose Spot On Ballot

Ald. Walter Burnett (27th)

Ald. Walter Burnett (27th) (Credit: CBS)

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CHICAGO (CBS) – Mayoral candidate Rahm Emanuel is not the only one who is being subjected to a high-profile ballot challenge.

Ald. Walter Burnett (27th), the chairman of the City Council Black Caucus, is in danger of losing his spot for reelection on the February ballot.

A challenger, Tom Courtney, is accusing Burnett of owing more than $2,000 in fines for code violations at two buildings he owns, the Chicago Sun-Times reported. The buildings are located at 2902 W. Fulton St. and 2711 W. Maypole Ave., the newspaper reported.

Courtney’s attorney, James Nally, says the 2008 Illinois Supreme Court case Cinkus v. Village of Stickney provides grounds for knocking Burnett off the ballot, the Sun-Times reported. The Supreme Court decision, Nally tells the Sun-Times, says if a candidate is in arrears to a municipality where he or she is running for office at the time of filing nomination petitions, the candidate is not eligible to run.

In response to the controversy, Burnett tells the Chicago Tribune: “I don’t owe any money. I don’t owe anything.”

Burnett has served as alderman of the 27th Ward since 1995. The ward includes much of the East Garfield Park, Ukrainian Village and West Town neighborhoods, much of the near West Side, and the Cabrini-Green area.