MADISON — The wife of a former Newman Grove mayor was fined for making a false statement in leading a petition to try to oust the community’s current mayor.
Connie Johnson, 49, of Newman Grove was fined $1,000 in Madison County court here Monday afternoon on the Class I misdemeanor of making a false statement under oath.
The charge stems from a few signatures on the recall petition against Newman Grove Mayor Fawn Steiff not being made in the presence of the petition circulator as required by law.
Steiff was retained by voters on May 15. Of the votes cast, 64 percent, or 158 votes, were against recalling her and only 36 percent, or 88 votes, were in favor of recalling her.
That margin was even greater than the general election in November 2010 when Steiff, as a write-in candidate, defeated incumbent David C. Johnson, Connie’s husband, by a tally of 150 to 109.
Connie Johnson ended up turning in 115 valid signatures, which was more than the minimum required to force the recall vote. Madison County Attorney Joe Smith has previously said he didn’t believe the false affirmations had any bearing on the recall election.