Poplar Grove, IL. (ECWd) –
It has come to our attention that the Village of Poplar Grove has been using its official Facebook page for electioneering purposes – in favor of the current Village President, Owen Costanza.
Use of official government communications, like email and social media, for electioneering purposes, is wrong and we urge residents of Poplar Grove to file an official complaint to either the Village’s Ethics Commission (if there is one) or the Illinois State Board of Elections.
This gives an unfair disadvantage to other candidates and gives the impression that the Village is taking sides in the upcoming election. No amount of couching it as an informative listening session or “coffee talk” while advertising it as a “Re-elect Costanza” event could bring it into compliance.
These advertisements also pulled Illinois State Representative Joe Sosnowski into the electioneering issue, since his name is listed as a speaker at this event. He should have known better.
Screencaps of electioneering communications on Poplar Grove’s official Facebook page:
Fred FlemmPosted at 16:34h, 10 March
Both candidates are using that page to post on, failing to see the issue here.
PKPosted at 20:40h, 10 March
It’s prohibited by the Illinois election code, and you don’t see an issue? Wow!
F PPosted at 23:18h, 10 March
Looks like a iligitament claim according to the Boone County Clerk’s office .
F PPosted at 23:27h, 10 March
From Boone County Clerk Julie Bliss:
“There are no electioneering laws in Illinois regarding social media.
Electioneering laws that fall within the scope of the Boone County Clerk’s office or the State Board of Elections only apply to the physical polling location during polling hours, which also includes early voting polling in my office. If there are any ethical questions about electioneering that occur outside the scope of the Boone County Clerk’s office or the State Board of Elections, then the issue should be referred to either the district in which the possible ethical violation occurred or filed with the State’s Attorney’s office.”
Julie A. Bliss (FKA Stapler)
Boone County Clerk & Recorder
1212 Logan Ave #103
Belvidere, IL 61008
This is inappropriate for a watch dog group, poor reporting and research. Laughable! Will no longer rely on this Page or Group!!
John KraftPosted at 08:11h, 11 March
There are definitely electioneering laws on the books concerning official public body social media accounts (public property) – I can only assume your County Clerk, spoke about electioneering complaints dealing directly with voting and and at poling locations. You appear to be confused about the definition of electioneering and using public public property to further a campaign for public office. We suggest you read our upcoming article: “Electioneering Using Social Media Violates State Law” – will be published this afternoon.
PKPosted at 12:58h, 11 March
Thanks for addressing my confusion.
The Illinois Ethics Act. Got it.