Tuesday, April 30, 2013

California: Yucca Valley Councilman facing petitions

Councilman George Huntington is facing recall petitions, and three other council members are expected to soon join him. Petitioners will need 2,352 signatures (25% of registereds).
There's a few issues, most prominently a $300,000 per year, three year contract for a Town Manager.

Colorado: Continued problems in the Center recall

Seems like it is just more motions at this point, but the judge turned down a request to have the Secretary of State serve as a special master.

Louisiana: Gonzales Councilman facing petitions for zoning vote

Gonzales Councilman Gary Lacombe due to a zoning vote against allowing a company to relocate to a traditional neighborhood.  Lacombe was elected in November, and one of the recall backers lost a council race (though not to Lacombe). Petitioners need 2,147 signatures in 180 days (1/3 of registereds).

California: Two file for Fontana School Board seats


Michigan: Four Gwinn School Board members facing petitions

Four Gwinn Area Community Schools board of education members, President Gloria Bigelow, Secretary Cindy Filizetti, and trustees Ron Libey and Michelle Dolby, are facing recall petition (which is now being reviewed under the factual standard). The issue appears to be a negative operating balance for the school district. Note that three members of the board are not facing recall threats. Petitioners would need 801 signatures each to get on the ballot. 

Monday, April 29, 2013

California: Los Banos School District petitions approved

The recall petition against Los Banos Unified School District Trustee Dennis Areias has been approved. Petitioners need 2,915 signatures by August 14. Recall is about the reassignment of a high school principal. 

Wisconsin: Stockbridge-Munsee tribe kicks out president in recall

Stockbridge-Munsee tribe has voted to kick out President Robert Chicks, 224-128. Chicks is facing Misdemeanor charges.

Washington: Group claims they have the signatures for Pacific Mayor recall

Petitioners claim that they have enough signatures to get the recall of Mayor Cy Sun on the ballot. Group handed in 556 signatures, they needed 412. 

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Wisconsin: Fox-Point Bayside School Board threatened with recalls over programs cuts

The members of the Fox Point-Bayside School Board, Pesident Debbie Friberg, Vice President Tim Melchert and member Alice Lawton, are facing recall threats after they voted to reduce art, technology, music and physical education programs. The proposed petitioner was a supporter of Scott Walker in his recall defense. Petitioners would need about 1500 signatures.

California: Fontana School Board recall gets move vicious

The Mayor, who is a big proponent of the recall of two Fontana School Board members, posted highly inflammatory statements against both of the two members, including posting on various online websites the phrase "no convicted criminals." Neither of the board members are convicts.

Michigan: Akron Village President recall petition rejected on factual basis

The new Michigan rules rules demanding factual statements on a recall are starting to have an effect, as the proposed recall of Akron Village President Juanita Hollister was rejected during a clarity hearing. The recall petition was sent back because it was for “lack of leadership” and being “fiscal irresponsible."
The recall was filed by former Akron Village President Robert Sode (who didn't run for reelection).

Friday, April 26, 2013

Florida: Doral City Council passes law mandating year wait between recalls

Doral City Council passed a law that mandates a year wait between recalls -- there will be no certification of a new recall until one year passed from the previous recall.
This passage follows a seemingly failed recall attempt last week, when petitioners claimed to have 1936, but only handed 1038.

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/04/26/3366727/doral-limits-recall-elections.html#storylink=cpy

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Washington: State Supreme Court allows Pacific Mayor Recall to go forward

The Washington State Supreme Court unanimously upheld the appellate court ruling allowing the recall of Pacific mayor Cy Sun to begin signature gathering. The court held that Sun's actions (see the list below) meets the malfeasance standard. Petitioners need 427 signatures.
  "...directed Pacific police department officers to operate as his personal police force in conducting a criminal investigations into the identity of those responsible for distributing negative information and allegations about him concerning his Echo [Oregon} property, which is outside their jurisdiction; [and] Jeopardizing the City's liability insurance coverage by not filling vacant department heads."

Florida: Second times the charm? Petitioners hand in signatures for Tamarac council recall

The recall of Council member Patte Atkins-Grad  may be moving forward, as petitioners handed in 1,531 signatures (they need 1250). In March, petitioners missed by 18 signatures (after 212 were declared invalid). Last time, they handed in the petition two days early. This time, they held off till the last day. This recall is taking place after Atkings-Grad was found not guilty of eight counts of bribery and unlawful compensation. Petitioners felt that she should resign.

Thanks to the odd requirements, petitioners will then have to go gather a second round of signatures -- they need 15% of the 12,496 voters, though the signers of the first petition can sign the second one.

New York: More on the recall law

I've done an analysis of some of the recall bill, but I'll wait to post, as I'm sharing it with others. Here's two articles in the Albany Times Union that looks a little more in-depth at the law.

Discussions on special elections

I've written on the perils of special elections before, but Doug Chapin (and Gary Hart and others) are taking a serious look at the dangers of too many specials. Well worth reading.

New York: Republican Assembly members proposed new recall law

I will have a lot more to say about this tomorrow. Here's the proposed bill.

Massachusetts: Pittstown Selectmen ousted in recall

Ted Sparrow Jr. lost his seat 290-90.

Florida: Doral Councilwoman recall attempt fails under bizarre circumstances

Weird event here -- the attempt to recall Doral Councilwoman Bettina Rodriguez-Aguilera appears to have failed. Petitioners claimed to have 1936 signatures (they needed about 1700), but the department is claiming that she only handed in 1038.
Brito brought a box of petitions to Barbara Herrera, Doral’s city clerk, last Tuesday. In an emailed statement, Herrera said she placed the box in the clerk’s office in front of a glass door while she and Doral city attorney Joe Jiménez waited for a police escort to take the signatures to the elections department, which is less than two miles from City Hall.
Jiménez said Brito told him she had scanned all of the petitions and would present them to him the next day. As of Wednesday, the city has not received the copies.
Doral City Council is considering changing its recall law so officials can only face a recall once per term.

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/04/24/3362582/doral-recall-effort-appears-to.html#storylink=cpy

Idaho: Couer d'Alene mayor not seeking

She faced down a recall threat last year.

Kenya: Difficulty of recalling MPs

Petitioners would need to depositing Sh500,000 with the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission, and the MP can only be recalled after 24 months of being in office and 12 months before the next General Election. The High Court has to confirm the need for a recall, which itself could take longer than a year.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Maine: Old Orchard councilor recalls gets on the ballot

All four Old Orchard councilor, Chairwoman Sharri MacDonald, Vice-Chairwoman Laura Bolduc and Councilors Dana Furtado and Linda Mailhot, are facing recall votes. The recall is over the termination of the Town Manager. Petitioners needed 815 signatures each to get on the ballot. The totals ranged between 914 and 921.
The three councilors who vote to retain the town manager, Michael Coleman, Robin Dayton and Robert Quinn, are also facing recall threats.

Wisconsin: Senator explains recall revision proposal


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Arizona: The long odds of the Arpaio recall

I'm quoted in the AP piece. Organizers claim that they have 200,000 valid signatures, meaning that they would need at least another 135K to get on the ballot. That's before the examination, so boost that total up. They have until May 30.

Massachusetts: Pittstown recall to be held on Wednesday

Selectmen Ted Sparrow Jr. over the vote to not reappoint former Town Clerk Ann Chadwick.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Oregon: Lawsuit filed against National Credit Union Administration for actions in St. Helens Community FCU

A lawsuit against St. Helens Community FCU of St. Helens, Ore. claims that the National Credit Union Adminstration dismissed the complaint claiming that St. Helens should not have counted absentee ballots in a recall against its five directors in 2012.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Texas: Petitions circulating against Lubbock City Councilman

Petitions are now circulating against Lubbock City Councilman Victor Hernandez. Petitioners need 30% of registereds 448 valids) to get on the ballot, and 10% of the signers must certify that they voted for Hernande is the last election. They have 30 days to get the signatures.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Alabama: Talk of recall against conflicted Huntsville City Councilman

 Huntsville City Councilman John Olshefski is being pushed to resign after he accepted an administrative job with Huntsville Utilities, which must get city council approval before raising rates on customers. There is some talk of a recall if he doesn't quit.

Colorado: Grand Junction City Councillor threatened with recall after arrest over domestic assault charge

Newly elected council member Rick Brainard is facing a recall threat after he was arrested in charges of third degree assault and harassment of his girlfriend. The City Council has also passed a resolution asking Brainard not to take office.
Petitioners have 30 days to collect 5,326 valids (25% of turnout).

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Michigan: Clarity hearing on Onaway mayor, two commissioners petition

An attempt to recall Onaway mayor Gary Wregglesworth and commissioners Chuck Abshagen and Jessie Horrocks is moving to the clarity hearing phase. Issue is police hiring (sounds like whether to have a police force or subcontract, but I could be wrong). The commissioners may not be eligible for the recall, as they are up in November, and new Michigan law mandates recalls be held on primary or election day (and this recall is likely to miss the May primary day).

Arizona: Recall revamp bill killed in the Senate Committeee

The vote was 18-10 against moving forward on the bill that would have added the primary law.

UK: Deputy PM claims Recall law to be voted on before next election


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Arizona: Senate adds new feature to recall bill -- mandating that recalled official be given slot in both primary and general recall

A very odd new provision in Arizona's propose recall law. Now, instead of just adding a primary, they are requiring that the official facing the recall be included on both the primary and general election ballots, even if they lose the primary. The sponsor claims that the Constitution requires that the elected official be included in the final ballot of the recall. It's not clear on what line they would be featured, but they are certainly being granted two bites of the apple here.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

California: City Council backed losers in the Coastside Fire Protection board recall

Four of five members of the Half Moon Bay City Council backed the three Coastside Fire Protection District board members who were blown out in a recall election last week.

Michigan: Akron Village President facing petitions for trying to charge a fee for talking to residents

Akron village president Juanita Hollister is facing petitions, due to the resignation of the police chief, DPW supervisor and a village council member; the amending the budget by $125K and perhaps most shocking, trying to charge the village a $60 meeting fee for talking to residents. The petitioner is the former Akron village president.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Colorado: State Senator Hudak facing petitions

State Senator Evie Hudak now facing recall petitions for her support of gun control -- petitioners need 18,962 signatures by June 10.

Texas: Former Longview Councilwoman who faced recall petitions arrested for beating roommate

Here. The recall petitions didn't get the signatures to get on the ballot.

Texas: Crying, Waiting, Hoping? Lubbock Councilman facing recall threats

Lubbock Councilman Victor Hernandez may face petitions, as he reports that former Lubbock County Commissioner Ysidro Gutierrez is looking into a recall. Petitioners would need 448 valids (30% of registereds) in 30 days., and 1/10 of the signers have to certify that they voted for the councilmen. Hernandez seems to be in a fight with the City Manager, including complaints that he is obsessed with her personal life and watching her at home.

Colorado: Detailed look at the Center recall lawsuit

The Center Post-Dispatch's Teresa Benns has an excellent detailed look at the Center lawsuit and the backstory.

New Jersey: Campaign to Recall of West New York Mayor begins

Mayor Felix Roque is facing petitions. Been a long lead-up to the campaign. You don't usually see a ribbon cutting as the start of a recall fight.

Texas: Huntsville Charter Review Committee examines recall law

A Charter Review Committee has tagged the city's recall law, which required only 1000 signatures, for possible changes. 

Colorado: State Senator Giron recall petitions approved

Petitions to recall State Sen. Angela Giron has been approved, with petitioners needing 11,500 signatures in 60 days.

California: Los Banos School Board member facing recall threats over principal reassignment

Los Banos Unified School District Trustee Dennis Areia, who has been in office since 1997, is facing a threatened recall. Issue seems to be the reassignment of a High School Principal by a 5-2 vote (only two of the five members are still in office).
Petitioners would need 2,915 signatures (20% of registereds) in 120 days.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Washington: Judge Shoots down request to recall five Everett School Board Members

An attempt to recall the five Everett School Board members was rejected. Petitioner claimed that the board did not have a required auditing committee. Washington (a malfeasance standard state) requires a judge to rule on whether the recall meets the state's cause requirement. The judge tossed this one out.

Missouri: Ellisville mayor impeached

Denouncement from the recall fight earlier this year.

California: Two School Board members in Seville kicked out in recall vote

Seville's Stone Corral Elementary School District Board members Reynold Esquivel (67-23) and Rebecca Quintana (64-26) were kicked out. Tom Redemer and Deborah Camille Roberts won the seats. Redemer beat out Erik Gonzalez (43-26). Gonzalez was a former board member who lost his seat in 2011.

The issue was that the attempted firing of teacher/principal/superintendent Chris Kemper and administrative assistant Dolores Gonzalez, the cancellation or rescheduling of some school board meetings and allegation that the two members refuse to speak to a few parents who weren't registered voters.

Maine: Petitions handed in against four Old Orchard councillors

Petitions have been submitted in the recall of four town councilors. This is another town manager firing recall. The four councilors Town Council chairwoman Sharri MacDonald, vice-chairwoman Laura Bolduc, and councilors Dana Furtado and Linda Mailhot, voted to fire the town manager in March, but haven't said why.

Petitioners need 815 signatures for each. They handed in about 1000.

There is a separate recall going on against the three councilors who voted against firing the manager. (They have until April 16 to get the petition).

Arizona: Long delays kill Yuma City Council Recall lawsuit

The attempt to recall two Yuma City Council members, Councilmen Paul Johnson and Jerry Stuart, has been withdrawn after over a year of delay. Johnson will be running for reelection; Stuart won't.

The recall has resulted in some lawsuits after the City Clerk and Recorder struck some signatures. The suit was originally dismissed in Superior Court, but the Appellate Court reversed. However, due to elections coming up, the petitioners are dropping the suit.

Nebraska: Debate continues about Grand Island mayoral recal

The recall against Mayor Jay Varicek failed after his reckless driving plea (petitioners needed 3,286, got 3,109). There's still talk about launching a new recall effort.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Non-recall op-ed in the Week: Scott Brown and the history of border jumping


Massachusetts: Former Hadley Select Board Member fails in bid to return to office 11 years after recall


California: Three Coastside Fire Protection District Board members ousted in recall

Looks like a clean sweep of the Coastside Fire Protection District board of directors, with Mike Alifano, (3555-2046), Douglas Mackintosh (3518-1999) and Gary Riddell (3505-2035)all losing by large margins in a union versus union fight.
Alifano lost to Karen K. Anderson, a private investigator; Mackintosh to J.B. Cockrell, a pilot; and Riddell to Harvey Rarback, a retired scientist. 
Note this on spending:
The "No on Recall" campaign raised $49,750 as of March 29. More than half the money came from firefighters unions throughout the Bay Area, including $15,000 from the San Mateo County Firefighters Local 2400, which aims to represent the Coastside instead of Cal Fire.
Anderson, Cockrell and Rarback each received more than $9,000 in direct and indirect support from the union representing Cal Fire firefighters.

California: Columnist throws cold water on talk of San Diego Mayor Recall

San Diego Mayor Bob Filner, who was elected in November, is facing talk of a recall. Filner came in second in the original race and triumphed in the run-off. He is also only the second Democratic mayor in San Diego since 1971. The article notes that petitioners would need 101,596 valid signatures (15% of turnout) to get on the ballot.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Colorado: Lawsuit filed to void Center recall

Moe Jones, one of the Center trustees who was kick out in a March 19 recall, file suit to void the election.

Jones is joined by the Aspen-based Citizen Center, whose press release gives some more detail on the complaint. The Citizen Center cite has the full filing:
“It is impossible to determine who actually won this election, given the massive breakdown in basic procedures. Of approximately 480 ballots cast, 301 absentee ballots were hand delivered with no record of who delivered them, a procedure that invites abuse. The votes on 364 of the ballots were counted in violation of the voters’ right to a secret ballot. This abuse of voter privacy is intolerable anywhere in Colorado, but it’s especially troubling in Center, with its continuing reports of voter intimidation and undue influence,” Marilyn Marks, President of Citizen Center, stated.

California: Threatened Salinas recall could cost $500K

Monday, April 8, 2013

Texas: El Paso mayoral candidate calls proposed change in election law an attempt to kill recalls

One of the candidates in the El Paso mayoral race called the proposal to change the election day from May (the traditional date for nonpartisan in Texas) to November an attack on future recalls and initiatives. 
The candidate claimed that the goal is to try up voter turnout to make create a prohibitive signature total:
Today, it takes the signatures of 5 percent of the voters in a city election to force the mayor or a city representative into a recall election. A May election might draw 40,000 voters, but more than 170,000 El Pasoans voted in the last presidential election. 
“That quadruples the number of signatures required for a recall election,” Haddad said.

California: Fontana School Board member claims too few polling stations set up for recall

In order to drop the cost of the recall, the County Elections are only using 12 polling places (based in part by a 2 percent voter turnout for the March 12 special primary election for state Senate District 32). We'll see how this plays out.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Wisconsin: Stockbridge-Munsee Tribal President faces April 27 recall vote

Stockbridge-Munsee Tribal President Robert Chicks is facing a recall vote on April 27. Petitioners handed 197 valid signatures-- they needed 150 (1/3 of turnout).
The recall comes after a 3-2 no-action vote by the council, after Chicks was charged with operating a car without a license, providing police with a false name, using a tribal credit card to post bond and missing his court appearance.

California: Petitions taken out to push for recall of Salinas Mayor

Petitions have been filed to push for a recall of Salinas Mayor Joe Gunter. Petitioners would need 7,6000 signatures to get on the ballot.

The recall is allegedly being pushed by Salinas City Councilman and Alisal Union School District board member Jose Castañeda. Gunter has refused to appoint Castañeda to council committees or regional commissions until he resigns from one of his two seats -- apparently, it is against California law to hold both of these laws at once.

Friday, April 5, 2013

North Carolina: State approves law allowing Ronda to adopt recall provisions

North Carolina's legislature has approved a bill (since signed by the Governor) allowing Ronda to vote in November  on whether to adopt a recall law. Ronda's original charter allowed a recall law.
The recall issue in Ronda first came up this fall when a petition signed by over 76 residents recalling Ronda Mayor Victor Varela was presented to the town. The petition was started by Kevin Reece who was not selected to an empty seat on the board. An official with the state said the town did not have recall capability.
This is also of interest:
Information from the N.C. School of Government provided a list of the following towns with recall capability. They are Aberdeen, Asheville, Cajah’s Mountain, Carrboro, Chapel Hill, Durham, Foxfire, Greensboro, Hickory, Lewisville, Lumberton, Oak Island, Pinebluff, Pleasant Garden, Raleigh, Randleman, River Bend, Statesville, Troutman and Winston-Salem. Recall is also permitted for the Chapel Hill-Carrboro school board.  No counties have recall for their commissioners.

Colorado: Gun Rights advocates question recall campaign

Petitioners are talking about going after Governor John Hickenlooper, which would require 450,000 signatures.  The article notes that while the Senate President is facing a big recall threat, none has been offered against House Speaker Mark Ferrandino due to the overwhelming Democratic nature of the district. 

Other people facing recall threats are Rep. Mike McLachlan (10,586 signature) and Senator Evie Hudak (19,000 signatures).

Arizona: Petitioners claim to be half way to Sheriff Arpaio recall

The Respect Arizona group petitioning for the Arpaio recall claims it is about halfway to the goal line -- with 169,283 signatures. The petitioners actually say that they have 20% more, but the 169K figure is valid (though that remains to be seen). They need 166,034 in the next 55 days.

California: Lake County Sheriff recall petitions starting

Petitions have been submitted against Lake County Sheriff Frank Rivero, though it looks like there are some errors that need correcting already before the signature gathering can start.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Colorado: Center recall now leads to claims of absentee ballot fraud

Since most of the voters were mail-in or absentee, this one could get ugly real fast:

In addition, nearly 300 mail-in ballots were hand delivered, but the names of those who brought in the ballots were not recorded. State municipal law requires that the town clerk must make a record of who delivered the ballots and note the date they were received.
There were also reports of a good number of names whose addresses could not be verified as Center residents. Additional anomalies were recorded, some by Cyriacks as she watched judges thumb through mail-in ballots during the recount.
But the problem that bothered Jones was that during the vote count March 19, all of the absentee ballots with their identifying stubs still attached were exposed for hours at the polling place.

Wisconsin: Senate bill looks to add malfeasance standard to recall

Senate Bill 114 (introduced by Republican Senator Sheila Harsdorf, who survived a recall vote), would add the judicial recall or malfeasance standard to the recall. The bill passed the Assembly last year, but failed in the Senate. Since this is a Constitutional Amendment, the bill actually has to pass both houses in two successive sessions and then be approved by voters in a state-wide vote.

Texas: State Rep proposes constitutional amendment allowing recalls for school boards

Texas state Rep. Marisa Márquez has proposed a bill that would put a constitutional amendment on the ballot allowing school board recall elections. The proposal would require 20% of turnout to get on the ballot.
The proposal follows scandals from the El Paso Superintendent and chearting scandals in several other districts.

California: Union versus union spending fuels Coastside Fire Protection District recall fight

The recall fight against three Coastside Fire Protection District directors has already resulted in both sides spending over $60,000 each.  What's most interesting is whose putting up the money -- a union versus union battle"

The money battle has largely pitted the various regional Bay Area firefighters’ associations against Local 2881, the Sacramento-based Cal Fire union. Nine separate fire unions from across the Bay Area injected a total of $35,500 toward stopping the recall, nearly half of it coming from San Mateo County Firefighters Local 2400.  
One candidate looking to supplant the seated directors says his side requested help from Cal Fire’s union to counterbalance the “no on the recall” fundraising. Last week, a political action committee representing Cal Fire employees contributed nearly $10,000 to each of the three challengers it supports.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Kansas: Two victors in Baxter Springs November recall lose seats in regular election, as does recall organizer

Two of the victors in the November 2012 recall were swept out of office in a Baxter Springs election. Incumbent Gary Allen, who survived the November vote, lost his seat 180-149. Donnie Wade, who defeat sitting incumbent Ron Costlow in the recall, lost his bid for a full term,114-75. And Cathy Bolek, who organized the recall, lost her race against an incumbent, 63-61.

The recall started when the mayor (who resigned her seat) replaced the City Clerk and Police Chief. The council rejected her replacement appointments, and restored the city clerk to her position.

Massachusetts: Hadley Select Board candidate lost seat in recall in 2002

One of the candidate for Hadley Select Board is trying for a comeback. John Mieczkowski was removed from the Select Board in a recall election in 2002. He was recalled for his push to terminate the Town Administrator and Town Counsel.

Wisconsin: Sheboygan mayoral recall victor loses race for full term

Terry Van Akkeren, who beat Bob Ryan in a recall race in 2012, lost his run for a full term as mayor to Mike Vandersteen. Unofficial results were 4,059 to 3,862.

Wisconsin: Judge who signed recall petition ousted in reelection race

Ozaukee County Circuit Judge Tom Wolfgram, a three-term incumbent who faced heavy criticism for signing the Scott Walker recall petitions lost to Joe Voiland. The vote was not close -- Voiland garnered over 60%.
Wolfgram was appointed by Republican Governor Tommy Thompson in 1994 and ran unopposed in this other three races. He also was named 2008 Judge of the Wisconsin State Bar. Some details on the race -- note that Darling was one of the state legislators who survived a recall vote:
A circuit court election is nonpartisan, but both candidates emphasized their Republican supporters in the race. Several Republican office holders in the county, including District Attorney Adam Gerol and Sheriff Maury Straub, endorsed Wolfgram.
Voiland's candidacy was backed by several Republican lawmakers representing portions of the county, such as Alberta Darling of River Hills and Jim Ott of Mequon.