UPDATE, 4 p.m.: Settle down! There will be at least two forums, and Bob Turner will participate, along with John Dickert.
Turner campaign coordinator Josh Stephany says final details have been arranged for Community for Change's forum, which will be held, as planned, on Thursday, April 23, from 6:30 to 8:30 at Gateway Technical College. (The timing originally had been announced as 6:30-10:30, but surely that was a placeholder.)
Turner also has agreed to attend YPR's forum, but not at City Hall, so that organization will find another venue. For the moment, the date is still Monday, April 20, but could change if no suitable venue is available.
Will there, or won't there, be any mayoral forums before the May 5 election?
That's the question Kelly Gallaher, who put together Community for Change's pre-primary forum, at Gateway Technical College, is asking. She says representatives of Young Professionals of Racine and the Racine Taxpayers Association -- both of which also held pre-primary forums and scheduled mayoral forums -- are also wondering about the status of their scheduled forums.
Everybody is waiting for word from State Rep. Bob Turner, who came in second in the primary on April 7. So far, he has not responded to calls from the forum-sponsoring organizations to confirm whether he will appear. His opponent, John Dickert, who came in first out of the 11 candidates in the primary, has confirmed his appearance.
We spoke this morning to Turner's new campaign coordinator, Joshua Stephany, who joined the campaign just last Friday. Stephany said he's "making all these calls today," and promised us -- and the forum sponsors -- an answer by the end of the day.
Both Community for Change and YPR are said to be considering cancelling their forums if word from Turner doesn't come quickly. YPR's, may be more in jeopardy, since it is scheduled first, on April 20, and its location would be in the City Council Chambers at City Hall, a site Turner twice refused to appear in during the primary campaign, saying political events held at taxpayers' expense would be illegal.
An opinion by City Attorney Robert Weber, issued afterwards, disputed Turner's position.
Community for Change's mayoral forum is scheduled for April 23, at Gateway Technical College. The organization has offered to collaborate with both the Racine Taxpayers and Young Professionals, if all the forums are conflated into one.