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Clock running on rollback check?

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DIANA BUCKLEY
Ellis County Press
WAXAHACHIE - County officials have delayed turning over 541 sheets of signatures to elections officials, and also appear to be waffling on whether or not the petitions have officially been received by the county.

Rollback proponents presented the signatures to County Administrative Assistant Delton Ake on Friday, Dec. 22, at the county's temporary offices in Waxahachie. County Auditor Mike Navarro and County Treasurer Mark Price were called in to witness the transaction.

'The judge is out of town today,' Ake said, 'He has authorized me to accept things in his absence.'

But later, County Commissioner Jerry Holland, Pct. 2, told reporters he would accept the petitions during a meeting with the commissioners. No mention of the petitions was made during the Commissioners' Court meeting of Dec. 27.

'(The petitions) are still in storage,' said Ake on Dec. 28. 'We are waiting on the district attorney and the county judge. We are hoping they will be here tomorrow so they can decide which is the next step.'

Ake had previously said the petitions would be turned over to elections officials on Weds., Dec. 27.

Some have speculated county officials may be trying to buy time for receipt of affidavits from people who claim they were mislead into signing the petitions. By law, such affidavits must be notarized and turned in to the county before the petitions are received.

'As far as I'm concerned, the petitions were received when we presented them on Dec. 22,' said John Tabor, Ellis county republican party chairman and rollback organizer.

On Dec. 22, county officials signed a receipt for '541 total sheets containing 8,740 signatures.'

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