The Powell City Council race is down by one candidate. Tuesday, Trent Hartranft said in an e-mail that the Delaware County Board of Elections declined to certify his petition.

The Powell City Council race is down by one candidate.

Tuesday, Trent Hartranft said in an e-mail that the Delaware County Board of Elections declined to certify his petition.

Janet Brenneman, director of the board, said Hartranft's petition was short two signatures. Fifty signatures of registered voters from Powell were needed.

Four of the signatures were of residents of Liberty Township and the petition could only include registered voters within Powell's city limits.

Hartranft said he thought the four people who signed the petition were city residents because they live just down the street.

He was disappointed in the news, he said, but plans to try again the next election.

"I'll give it another shot in the next election in two years," Hartranft said.

Brenneman said the election laws for certifying petitions are strict with regard to what needs to be recorded on the document. The board compares the information and signature on the voter's registration card to that of the petition.

Differences between the two documents, such as different addresses or differences in the appearance of a voter's signature disqualifies that signature from the count she said.

"For instance, if they've printed their name on the petition, but on their voter registration it's a signature, we can't count that," she said.

A petition signature that would also be disqualified from the count is that of the person who is circulating the petition.

"The person carrying the petition can't sign the petition they are carrying," Brenneman said. "They can sign another petitioner's sheet, but not the one their carrying."

Petitioners are witnesses to the veracity of the signature, and by law "you can't be a witness to your own signature," she said.

Asked about common errors petitioners make, she said there are a number:

Not having enough valid signatures because some of the names on the petitions are excluded from the count.

Not completely filling out the petition.

"There are certain criteria that are fatal flaws," she said, noting that if the petitioner turners in a sheet that does not list the number of signatures on the sheet, the entire sheet of signatures is disqualified.

To help remedy those problems, candidates can turn in up to three times as many signatures as are needed she said.

Brenneman said that a person whose petitions are not certified cannot run as a write-in candidate. The deadline for which is 4 p.m. Sept 2.

"You can't file for the same position even with another method such as write in," she said.

The remaining five candidates for Powell city council are Ronald Beach, Sara Marie Brenner, Tom Counts, Jim Hrivnak and Brian Lorenz.