An independent Hilliard City Council candidate hoping to challenge Republican incumbents on the Nov. 3 ballot will not have the opportunity to do so.

An independent Hilliard City Council candidate hoping to challenge Republican incumbents on the Nov. 3 ballot will not have the opportunity to do so.

Jordan Smith, 36, failed to achieve certification of his petition. Smith owns Lil' Donut Factory, 4543 Scioto Darby Road.

Smith's failure to make the ballot, absent a write-in candidate, would mean incumbent council members Joe Erb, Al Iosue and Nathan Painter would be unopposed in November.

Smith is not eligible to be a write-in candidate this year because of this previous attempt at making the ballot.

Ohio law prevents an unsuccessful candidate from making a second attempt for office in the same election, said Ben Piscitelli, a spokesman for the Franklin County Board of Elections.

The filing deadline for write-in candidates is Aug. 24.

The Board of Elections announced Monday, July 6, that Smith's petition was not valid because he failed to obtain the required number of valid signatures.

Smith turned in a petition with 156 signatures and was required to have 89 valid signatures, according to the elections board.

The number of required signatures must be equal to 10 percent of the number of Hilliard voters who cast ballots for governor in the last gubernatorial election, per Hilliard's city charter.

Smith's petition had 80 valid signatures, according to the elections board.

It had 76 invalid signatures; 56 were flawed because the person who signed lived outside the city limits, Piscitelli said.

Smith said Tuesday, July 7, he was not aware his petition had been rejected and was disappointed.

"While it is frustrating, I know that not one person put their signature on that sheet wishing my campaign harm. I will remain active in local politics especially as it pertains to TIF abuse," said Smith, adding he will use social media to promote progressive non-partisan policies.

Smith said many of those who signed his petition were customers at his store who told him they resided in Hilliard and that he was surprised so many signatures were invalid.

Erb said Tuesday he was not aware Smith's petition was found invalid.

"I encourage Mr. Smith, as I do all citizens, to stay involved," Erb said.

"I believe his intentions were in the right place," said Erb, adding he would welcome an opportunity to discuss any matters with Smith as the city moves forward.

Erb is completing his first four-year term on council, as is Painter. Iosue is completing his second term on council.

Mayor Don Schonhardt, absent a write-in candidate, also would be unopposed on the Nov. 3 ballot. The Republican mayor is seeking his fourth term.

Absentee voting begins Oct. 6.