Venango County Elections Board Rescinds Aaron Bolinger’s Voter Registration

| September 13, 2017

FRANKLIN, Pa. (EYT) – After receiving petitions from three Venango County residents challenging the voter registration of Aaron Bolinger, the Venango County Elections Board rescinded Bolinger’s registration at Tuesday’s meeting.

(Aaron Bolinger, gray shirt leaning over the table, had his voter registration in Venango County rescinded by the Elections Board Tuesday after failing to produce proof of citizenship and residency after three Cranberry Township residents challenged his registration.)

“There were three residents in Cranberry (Township) that challenged his registration,” Venango County Commissioner Albert “Chip” Abramovic said. “They challenged if he was a registered voter, if he could be a registered voter or not, and for proof of citizenship.”

According to Venango County Commissioner Tim Brooks, also a member of the Elections Board, the petitions also challenged whether or not Bolinger resided in the district he said he did and if he was a United States citizen.

Documents obtained through a Right-to-Know Request filed by exploreVenango.com show that the three Cranberry Township residents that challenged Bolinger’s registration were Gail Colvin, Fred Jolley, and Frank Pankratz.

Colvin’s challenge stated, “I don’t believe he is a resident of Cranberry Township.”

Jolley’s said, “I don’t think Mr. Bolinger is a United States citizen.”

Pankratz’s attested, “To my knowledge, Bolinger has never paid taxes to Cranberry Township, and I don’t think he is a township resident.”

According to Brooks, a person does not have to provide proof of residency or citizenship when they register to vote but that they must provide if the registration is challenged.

“He doesn’t have to provide that information to us for us to register him,” Brooks said. “But, if somebody challenges that information, then we require him to produce that information for us. We sent him a letter, and he never answered.”

The challenges to Bolinger’s ability to be a registered voter in Cranberry Township were filed on August 4 by Colvin, Jolley, and Pankratz.

After receiving the challenges, the Elections Board contacted Bolinger to provide proof of residence and citizenship.

In a letter dated August 9, the board asked Bolinger to provide two forms of identification, one from two distinctly different lists.

The first form of identification list was to prove his U.S. citizenship and could include any one of the following:

  • Birth Certificate with raised seal (U.S. issued by an authorized government agency, including U.S. territories or Puerto Rico. Non-U.S. Birth certificates will not be accepted.
  • Certificate of U.S. Citizenship (USCIS Form N-560) or Consular Report of Birth Abroad (DOS Form FS-240.
  • Certificate of Naturalization (U.S.CIS Form N-550 or N-570).
  • Valid U.S. Passport.

The second form of identification was an acceptable list of documents for proof of residency and included:

  • Tax Records
  • W-2 Form
  • Lease Agreement
  • Current Weapons Permit
  • Mortgage Documents
  • Current Utility bill (water, gas, electric, cable, etc.)

The letter continued to state that if Bolinger resided with someone and had no bills in his name, he still needed to provide two proofs of residency. One proof could have been to bring the person with whom he resided along with a driver’s license or photo ID.

The Elections Board gave Bolinger 10 business days to provide the information, but according to Brooks, Bolinger never responded to the letter.

Bolinger can still re-register to vote at any point.

“He can do that at any time,” Brooks said.

According to Venango County Commissioner Vincent Witherup, also a member of the Elections Board, this is the first time he can recall the Elections Board rescinding someone’s voter registration.

“It is also the first time someone came in and didn’t have a driver’s license or a social security card or anything,” Witherup said.

Brooks said this is the first time since he has been on the Elections Board that someone even petitioned to have someone’s registration rescinded.

Bolinger created headlines over the summer when he helped spearhead a group that attempted to have a portion of Cranberry Township leave the township and join Rockland Township, a group so-dubbed “Crexit.” Venango County Senior Judge H. William White threw out the petitions that would have put the movement on the November ballot on August 16.

RELATED STORY

Venango Commissioners Take Steps to Provide Loans to Start-up Businesses in County


Copyright © 2017 EYT Media Group, Inc. All rights reserved. Any copying, redistribution or retransmission of the contents of this service without the express written consent of EYT Media Group, Inc. is expressly prohibited.

Category: Local News, News