Jessamine County Clerk Eva L. McDaniel said while the KRS indicates the second Tuesday in August, her office needed the petition on July 29 for the purpose of verification before the Aug. 9 deadline.
“We have to have (it) certified — that’s looking up all the signatures,” she said. “That would take maybe a week or so.”
Barnes said the Council Petition Committee debated on whether to appeal McDaniel’s requirement that the signatures must be turned in by July 29, but in the end the group opted to continue to collect signatures in order to put it on the ballot in 2012.
“We honored that and said the heck with it; we'll just be on next year's ballot,” he said.
Barnes said as of last Friday, the group had collected more than 1,400 signatures and fully expects to have more than enough for 2012.
“They are very close to the 2,101 signatures required and expect to meet that requirement by the original Aug. 8 deadline by taking signatures at 957 S. Main St. in Nicholasville and going door to door,” Barnes said in a news release. “However, with the revised July 29, 2011 deadline, they will now have another 11 months to more than fulfill the statute requirements and be on the 2012 ballot.”
As it currently operates, the Nicholasville City Commission has four part-time commissioners and a part-time mayor who oversee operations in the city’s departments.
In April, Barnes said the reason for wanting a change in the form of government was simple.
“Currently, we have a commission form of government, which there are very few cities within the state that actually have a commission form where they (commissioners) are elected city-wide,” he said.
The petition committee also alluded to many of the current city commissioners living in one section of the city.
“And while they profess to do a good job — and I think they probably have — they don’t have neighborhood representation, like the east side of Nicholasville,” Barnes said in April.
The petition committee used methods to get the word out, including mass e-mails and from former Mayor John Martin’s website, which has served as the group’s official site.
In April, Nicholasville Mayor Russ Meyer said the whole idea of a commission form of government is proper representation.
“The commission form of government is a form of government that entices people to work together for a common cause,” he said. “I don’t think that the council form of government brings that in play as much as the commission form of government.”
Meyer also said each member of the commission represents the entire city, not just a sector.
“We answer to everybody in the community,” he said. “That also promotes working together.”
Meyer added that having a commission form of government allows for checks and balances and no one person on the board has more pull than another when it comes to voting.
The city of Nicholasville was a council form of government until the early 1970s. On Nov. 7, 1972, the move to switch to a commission form of government passed by a 559-557 vote.