Madison County Associate Judge Clarence Harrison declined to order the City of Wood River to remove "vote Yes" signs positioned on city-owned property and inside City Hall that promote a sales tax increase referendum on the ballot in Tuesday's election.
At a hearing challenging the city on Monday morning, Harrison indicated that if opponents of the signs want a remedy they can vote the public officials responsible out of office, according to a courtroom observer.
The controversy involves what critics say is a violation of the city's own ordinance regarding political signs on city property, as well as the city's position not to allow "vote No" signs on city property.
Last week, a spokesperson for the Illinois State Board of Elections said that if the city paid for the signs and/or used workers to place them on city property would be considered election interference.
The proposal on the ballot would hike sales tax by 1 percent, although groceries, prescriptions, over-the-counter medications, auto sales and gasoline would be excluded.