Retiree Gloria Williams is the former director of elections for the city of Detroit, where she also was a manager of computer applications. She filed this objection and is scheduled to testify during the confirmation hearing. She spoke with Sandra Svoboda, bankruptcy reporter and blogger for WDET and Next Chapter Detroit. Here’s that interview, with a transcript below.
Sandra Svoboda: Why did you file an objection in the bankruptcy case?
Gloria Williams: Because of the inconsistencies in the way the balloting took place. First they sent us two ballots. Then they said they made a mistake and they sent us more ballots and it wasn’t clear as to which ballots should be returned, what was going to happen if you’d already returned your ballot and then you send your new ballot in. It wasn’t really clear as to what was going to happen to all of those ballots. Why I was really concerned was there wasn’t an accounting in the final documents as to what happened to the ballots and there’s no audit of the balloting process.
SS: You’re referring to of course, the voting on the Plan of Adjustment that was done by the different classes of creditors, yours being the retirees or pensioners.
GW: Correct. You have to understand that there are thousands of retirees who are out there who are in their 70s, 80s, 90s who would be totally confused with how the balloting took place.
SS: Did you raise these concerns before or during the voting process?
GW: Well, I wasn’t concerned until the results came back and I read through the results and didn’t see where they accounted for those ballots. They didn’t say how many they had received that were invalid, how many were duplicates and those ballots were never accounted for plus in every election, I don’t care what kind of election it is, that election is supposed to be audited by some independent agency and it wasn’t.
SS: Have you received notice as to when you’ll be testifying during the confirmation process? What are you anticipating that will be like?
GW: They did send me documentation and they said I would have to interview the balloting company over the phone because they weren’t coming. (laughs) And I thought that was disrespectful if nothing else.
SS: What do you plan on telling the judge about your objection?
GW: I really don’t want to reveal that right now because I don’t want them to be prepared for the answer. (laughs) So I would rather do that when I get to court, that way they will, you know, won’t have time to research and find this case and that case against what I’m proposing. It’s just that after there were so many questions about the balloting process, they should have volunteered to have someone else, some other company review what they did just to validate their process.. So I thought that was odd that they didn’t do that.