A Facebook post from April, shows St. George leaders told residents they couldn’t sign the incorporation petition unless they had been registered to vote in the area before Oct. 20, 2014 — the day the first phase of the petition was turned in to the Registrar of Voters.
This is in direct contrast to the crux of their own legal challenge, filed in state court on Friday, where St. George leaders argue that the petition to incorporate should have been validated because names were erroneously thrown out from people who weren’t registered to vote by that date. They now say there’s nothing in state law that required voters to be registered by the date the petition was turned in.
On April 13, a resident asked the group on its official public website if she could sign the petition. St. George responded, “You must have been registered in the proposed St. George limits before Oct. 20 of last year to sign. However, you will definitely be able to vote! Just make sure you register to vote.”
The group has since had a critical change of heart.
The petition was killed when the Registrar determined that it came up 71 names short of the 17,859 needed to move forward to an election.
If you signed the petition but were not registered to vote, and you didn’t register to vote by Oct. 20, 2014, then the Registrar excluded your signature.
Also, if you signed the second phase of the petition, turned in on May 28, but you weren’t registered to vote before Oct. 20, 2014, your name was also excluded, the suit says.
St. George attorneys are advocating that there is nothing in state law that requires that people be registered to vote by that date, as long as they eventually registered to vote. They say people who eventually registered to vote should have their names counted, and they maintain that there are enough of those instances that it would have allowed the petition to move forward to the next phase.