Wednesday, July 30, 2014

California: Solano County Superior Court Judge facing petitions

Solano County Superior Court Judge Cynda Riggins-Unger is facing recall petitions over claims that she is rude to female litigants. Petitioners would need about 25,000 signatures to get on the ballot.

The attempt against Riggins-Unger follows an effort against another Soloano Judge, Daniel Healy. The Healy recall effort doesn't seem to have gone anywhere, but Healy is now just assigned criminal cases and no longer hears family law cases.

I've mentioned before how unusual it is for a recall of a judge to go anywhere, so I wouldn't expect anything from this. But even the act of taking petitions is unusual.

Wisconsin: Crandon mayor ousted

Crandon Mayor Rob Jaeger was kicked out of office on Tuesday, losing to Dennis Rosa 378-184 (67%). Petitioners claimed that Jaegar was trying to take over the city and fire employees. This was one that the City Council refused to schedule, but was forced onto the ballot by state law.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Michigan: Signatures handed in for Blackman Township recall

Over 1500 signatures have been turned in for the recall of Blackman Township trustees Betty Brockie and Mark Singer. Petitioners need 1254 valids to get on the ballot.

The issue was the trustees vote for almost $100,000 for other elected officials (which was alleged to be a possible open meeting law violation). Two other officials resigned over the vote, including Trustee Paula Clingerman, who was also facing petitions. The other official to resign, Treasurer Sherry Brockie, was to be on one of the receipents of the raise. One of the article captions notes that Betty Brockie is the mother-in-law of Sherry Brockie.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Wisconsin: Frac Sand Mining recall scheduled in Cleveland

The recall of Cleveland Town Board Supervisor Joe Egloff has been set for August 12 (the same day as the statewide primary). The recall appears to be another of the frac sand mining recalls (Engloff opposes allowing mining to go on).

Kansas: Denison Mayor resigns two weeks before recall vote

Denison Mayor Audrey Oliverius resigned in the face of a August 5th recall vote over a violation of the Open Meeting laws. The violation occurred during a meeting on who to appoint to a vacant council seat. Petitioners needed 12 signatures for the recall, they got 29 (including three of the other four council members).   The recall vote will still take place due to the lateness of the resignation. The recall is for Oliverius' council seat. 

Texas: Signatures collected in recall of Hearne Councilwoman

Petitioners claim to have gotten enough signatures for Hearne councilmember Maxine Vaughn, with petitioners claiming they lost confidence in Vaughn (who has been on the council since 2009). No idea if there is any connection, but a resident was convicted of threatening Vaughn.

Ohio: City Council members now targeted in Richmond Heights recall

A second groups of recall have hit Richmond Heights. Mayor Miesha Wilson Headen has been targeted for a recall before, Now City Council President David Roche and members Eloise Henry and Donald O'Toole are also facing petitions. The council has been feuding with the mayor, especially since the firing of the city's Law Director.

New Jersey: Belleville councilwoman facing petitions

Belleville Councilwoman Marie Strumolo Burke is facing petitions over using a racial epithet on a answering machine for a fellow councilman several years ago. Burke has decided the voice was hers.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Michigan: Signature collection goes on in Comstock Township Supervisor recall

Comstock Township Supervisor Ann Nieuwenhuis is facing petitions after petitioners claim that Nieuwenhuis required them to pay for a $150 sign permit for his business (Semper Fitness) and refused to refund the money. It seems that the petition was rejected by the former zoning administrator, which Nieuwenhuis claims she has no power to accept or deny.

Petitioners need 1260 signatures, they claim to have 300-400, and need to have it by August 1 to get on the Election Day ballot. Petition language stays valid until October 11 (it was first approved on April 14).

Michigan: Jerome Township Clerk recall language approved

The recall attempt against Jerome Township Clerk Connie Methner over a failure to publish board meetings in a newspaper in a timely matter may be moving forward. Methner says that she will appeal the clarity hearing ruling in an attempt to stop the recall early in the process.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Ohio: Signatures collected against Waynesfield Councilman

Waynesfield councilman Bill Motter is facing petitions over his proposal to bring back the Board of Public Affairs. The petitioner stated that she first wanted to recall a different councilman (Dick Hardin), but Ohio law gives him a one year grace period (Hardin was sworn in in January).

Petitioners needs 35 signatures (15% of turnout). She claims to have gotten 33 signatures.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Massachusetts: Lancaster Selectmen miss meeting, recall election delayed

Some more intrigue in the recall of two Lancaster Selectmen, Jean Syria and Susan Smiley. Both missed a selectmen meeting on Tuesday, which (due to a lack of quorum on the three member board) meant that the recall elections could not be scheduled (the signatures have to be accepted by the board first).
Syria claimed she was out of town for a family issue, and Smiley said thunderstorms stopped her from coming. There's more on how it will be difficult to schedule the next selectmen meeting.
Apologies to the two officials, but there is a long and sordid history of elected bodies preventing recalls of their own members, sometimes with an outright refusal to schedule the election (here's an op-ed I wrote on the subject), so feel free to remain suspicious.   

Texas: Lubbock recalls are not fading away as Councilman faces threat of second recall in two years

Councilman Victor Hernandez is facing recall petitions over what the petitioner claims is a failure to return phone calls. Hernandez claims that the issue was fight over the local Democratic Party leadership. The petitioner, Leo Flores, was voted vice chair in what Hernandez called a "premature" election, but then another election was held and Flores was defeated by a candidate supported by Hernandez.

This would be Hernandez's second recall -- he survived one in November, at the same time that he was running for reelection. Since he was reelected, he is eligible to face a recall on the new term (after six month, which just passed).

Michigan: Recall effort against Genesee County sheriff punted to state board

Genesee County Sheriff Robert Pickell is facing another petition effort, over a complaint that it  with the last one rejected due to language issues. Petitioner would need 33,000 signatures. Now the County Election Board has decided it is up to the State Board of Canvassers to rule, a new change from the 2012 law.

Michigan Election Law MCL 168.959, petitions recalling U.S. Senator, members of congress, elected state officials and "county officials except county commissioners, shall be filed with the secretary of state."
While that was last edited in 1976, the law was updated in December 2012, which designates that it go to the Board of State Canvassers.

Oregon: Portland Mayor, Commissioner facing petitions

Portland Mayor Charlie Hales and Commissioner Steve Novick are facing petitions over their proposed monthly street fee for maintenance. Petitioners need 34,921 signatures for each by October 9.

Also worth checking out is Andrew Theen's look at the history of recalls in Portland. There have been only two successful recall removals in Portland history, Commissioner John Mann in 1932 and Commissioner J.E. Bennett in 1952. Portland's Mayor Sam Adams and Vera Katz both faced failed recall attempts.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

West Virginia: Bridgeport mayor facing recall petitions after indictment

Bridgeport Mayor Mario Blount, a pharmacist who was indicted on federal charges for improper distribution of prescription painkillers, is now facing petitions. Petitioners would need to get 10% (617). Because this is West Virginia, petitioner would need to pay a filing fee of $6,000 to $7000 to get it on the ballot.

Ohio: Richmond Heights Mayor facing petitions

Richmond Heights mayor Miesha Headen is facing recall petitions over her alleged "inability to compromise, negotiate and work effectively with others." Header is blamed for a recent decision to fire the city' IT services outside manager and for firing 10 employees  Petitioners need 725 (25% of total).

 Headen's supporters have started counterfire efforts, looking for the recall of Councilman Donald O'Toole, Council President David Roche, and Councilwoman Eloise Henry These are some of the issues that have lead to the political turmoil in Richmond Heights:

Texas: Palestine mayor, councilman recall petitions started

The recall effort against Mayor Therrell Thomas and Councilman Steve Presley has begun, and two council members have signed the petitions.

Arizona: Recalled State Senator Russell Pearce takes job in Maricopa County Treasurer's office

Here