Thursday, July 15, 2021

Candidate appeals removal from mayoral primary ballot

Whether William Asper's name appears on the Aug. 3 primary election ballot in Westland will be determined by Michigan Secretary of State.

Asper's name was removed from the list of viable mayoral candidates by Westland City Clerk Richard LeBlanc following a meeting of the city election commission where it was determined that Asper is actually a Canton Township resident. 

Mayor William R. Wild and City Council President Jim Hart serve on the commission and made the unanimous decision to remove Asper's name from the ballot based on his residency status.

Asper has filed an appeal of the June 2 decision to the secretary of state hoping to have his name added to the list of candidates vying to replace incumbent Wild. 

Asper has admitted that he only registered to vote in Westland the same day he filed his petition to seek election and that he was not a Westland resident when he filed seeking the office. 

He claims that he was renovating a home on Allegan Court which he has owned since 2018 and that he owns several other properties in Westland. According to city records, the Allegan property has not had water service since June of 2020 and does not have a valid certificate of occupancy. Mail sent to Asper at the address he provided on his candidacy paperwork was returned to LeBlanc's office as undeliverable and stamped “vacant.”    

He has admitted that he was not a Westland resident when he filed his petition for office but claims he will reside in the Allegan Court home. He is asking the secretary of state to force the city to invalidate any already returned absentee ballots and then issue new ballots that include his name as a candidate for mayor.