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State senate candidate Hastings could step down from D230 board in January

Michael Hastings receives congratulations from Teachers' Association President Carrie Cox after Wednesday's D230 board meeting. (Jeff Vorva/Tribune)

Michael Hastings receives congratulations from Teachers' Association President Carrie Cox after Wednesday's D230 board meeting. (Jeff Vorva/Tribune)

Michael Hastings is halfway to a state Senate seat and if he wins it, he said he would vacate his seat on the Consolidated High School 230 board in January.

The Orland Hills resident beat out Tinley Park’s Greg Hannon March 20 in the Democratic primary race for the District 19 Senate seat currently held by retiring Maggie Crotty. No Republican candidate ran in the primary.

Hastings is bracing himself for the possibility of a Republican candidate emerging. His plan is to stay with the school board for the next nine months.

“The (state Senate) swearing-in ceremony will be in January,” he said after the March 21 board meeting. “At that time I will step down from the board of education. At that time, I would be a full-time senator. The board deserves a full-time school board member, not a part-time school board member. And the Senate definitely deserves a full-time senator.’’

Hastings said if that happened, the board would appoint a new member through April, when there would be an election for that spot. He was elected to the board in 2009 and served as vice president for seven months spanning 2010 and 2011.

Hastings said he received a congratulatory phone call from Gov. Pat Quinn on March 21 and is looking forward to the possibility of campaigning between now and the November election if a Republican candidate surfaces.

“They have a certain amount of time if they want to go into the general election,” Hastings said. “They have to file petitions and we will make sure they are valid signatures of registered voters. If they make it through that process, it’s a full-out election. From now until then, we’re treating this as ‘game on.’ We’ll go at it full-steam ahead and if they choose not to, that’s fine. I’ll go relentless on this.”

The 19th District serves all or part of Tinley Park, Orland Park, Joliet, Frankfort, Lockport, Mokena, New Lenox, Homer Glen Country Club Hills, Dixmoor, Flossmoor, Hazel Crest, Homewood, Markham, Matteson, Monee, Oak Forest, Olympia Fields, Park Forest and Richton Park.

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