Advocacy group sues Lackawanna County election board over solitary confinement ballot question

The Times Tribune, 09/21/22: “A group that fought for a referendum to limit solitary confinement at the Lackawanna County Prison filed a lawsuit Wednesday challenging the board of elections’ decision to reject their petition.

Attorneys for PA Stands Up argue the board, comprised of the three county commissioners, misinterpreted a state statute that county solicitor Frank Ruggiero contends prevents the referendum from appearing on the November general election ballot.

The lawsuit, filed in Lackawanna County Court, also alleges the board has no authority to decide the legality of the referendum, which PA Stands Up says met all procedural requirements in the election code.

‘The board of elections is becoming the judge and jury in terms of what will go on our ballot,’ Jaclyn Kurin, one of PA Stand Up’s attorneys, said at a press conference outside the Lackawanna County Government Center. ‘They are not allowed to make that determination … All we are asking is that the decision be left to voters. The board of elections took that away and they did it improperly.’

Read the full story here.