Sunday, May 28, 2023

UK: Scottish MP set to receive 30 day sentence, triggering recall petition

It appears that MP Margaret Ferrier (a former SNP member) will receive a 30 day suspension from parliament, which would start a recall petition under UK rules (a suspension of 10 days or more kicks the recall into gear). Ferrier plead guilty to violating COVID safety protocols in 2020, after refusing to self isolate, going to church and a bar and then taking a train from Glasgow to London despite having the coronavirus (though she had not yet tested positive). 

SNP seems to want a recall to get by-election on the ballot. Any petitioners would need 8100 signatures to get on the ballot. 

And here's a columnist opposing recalls in general, unless the official is sentenced to jail.

Wisconsin: Outagamie County Supervisor facing recall threats

Outagamie County Supervisor Timothy Hermes is facing recall threats over allegedly transphobic comments. No word if there are any significant efforts to push it forward.

Michigan: Petitions taken out against two Caro Area District Library members

Petitions have been taken out against Caro Area District Library members Stacy Crutchfield and Jordyn Nordstrom over claims of violation of privacy. 

The lead petitioner claims that she complained about inappropriate books for children which should be removed from the children's section (and focused on that this shouldn't be considered support for a book ban). The petitioner claims that her information was not kept confidential, in violation of the library policy.

Petitioners would need 1193 signatures to get on the ballot.

Colorado: Signatures verified against Broomfield City Councilmember

Petitioners seem to have gotten the recall of Broomfield City Councilmember Todd Cohen on the ballot, as they handed in 1356 signatures, 1246 were verified. 1083 were needed.

The recall is over his support for two gun control ordinances that passed, one of which required serialized numbers to prevent ghost guns and banning open carry. Petitioners are also complaining about a water tank bill and homelessness. Another councilmember, Heidi Henkel, was also targeted, but since she is up for reelection, it seems like there is no real effort against her.

The anti-recall group is citing a potential cost of $76,000 for the recall.

Illinois: Galesburg Alderperson facing recall threats, though there is no city recall law

Galesburg Alderperson Heather Acerra is being threatened with a recall, though there is no recall law in Galesburg. 


Hawaii: Honolulu City Council members facing recall threats

There is now chatter about a recall against Honolulu City Council Chair Tommy Waters and members Calvin Say, Esther Kiaaina, Tyler Dos Santos-Tam, Matt Weyer, Val Okimoto and Radiant Cordero over a pay raise. 

Petitioners need at least the signatures of 10% of registered voters at the last election. They would need between 5,000 to 8,000 to get on the ballot.

Interestingly, there is also an impeachment law that voters can start by collecting 5000 signatures for mayor or 1000 for the council. In that case, the courts decide whether there is a violation (like Virginia's recall trial law).

Thursday, May 25, 2023

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Michigan: Petitions taken out against three Davison School Board

Petitions have been taken out against three Davison School Board Members, President Karen Conover, VP Granger Stefanko and Treasurer Holly Halabicky. A recall against a fourth member could not be filed due to the fact that he was in the first year grace period.

Massachusetts: Charlemont voting on recall provision at town meeting

Voters in Charlemont will be deciding on a recall provision at the annual town meeting on May 23. The provision mimics a recall provision in Colrain.  The recall would require signatures of 10% of registered voters to get a recall on the ballot (the town currently has 945 registereds). The election would be a two-step process, with an up or down vote on the recall, with a replacement vote on the same ballot. The removed official cannot run to replace themselves. 

There is also a six months grace period at the start of the term and the official cannot be appointed to a town position for a year after removal.

Washington: Signatures verified against three Richland School Board members

The recall effort against three Richland School Board members Semi Bird, Audra Byrd and Kari Williams has made the ballot. Petitioners handed in over 18000 signatures. They need 5352 for Byrd, 5293 for Bird and 4705 for Williams. No word yet on signature failure rate.

The recall is over their vote to make mask mandates optional, which allegedly violates a state law that mandated masks to fight the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Washington State Supreme Court has approved the recall effort, which because Washington is a malfeasance standard/judicial recall state, needed a showing of a violation of state law.

California: Petitions taken out against Gateway School Board members

Gateway School Board Members Lindsi Haynes and Elias Haynes are facing petitions. Petitioners need 2052 signatures in 90 days. The issue seems to be firing the superintendent and failing to replace a trustee.

Florida: Apopka Mayor recall effort fails with petitioners not getting signatures on first stage

The recall effort against Apopka Mayor Bryan Nelson has failed. Petitioners turned in 1695 signatures and needed 1762. They handed in 1692. This would have been just for the first stage of the recall effort (then more signatures need to be handed in.

The recall is over the death of a firefighter (which petitioners claim is due to lack of training/supervision), though there is also a firing of the city attorney. There were two no-confidence votes against the Fire Chief from the firefighters' union and the city council.

Oregon: State Rep hit with recall effort from unions

State Representative Paul Holvey (D) is facing a recall effort over his failure to support a bill blocking cannabis employers from interfering with employee efforts to unionize. One of the state's largest labor unions is leading the recall effort. Holvey was a former union representative. Petitioners need 4598 signatures by August 21.

Here's some further discussion on this.

Missouri: Proposed changes to Kansas City Charter include increasing recall signature requirement

A Kansas City Charter Commission has recommended two changes to the recall law -- increasing the signature requirement from 20% to 25% of turnout; establishing a minmum signature requirement (3000 for in-district and 18,000 for at-large) 

Friday, May 19, 2023

North Dakota: My op-ed on the use of the recall in North Dakota

Here's my look at some of the history and recent use of the recall in North Dakota. The state is in the midst of a mini-boom, with the recall of Horace Councilwoman, three Williston Basin School Board members and the resignation of a Bismarck school board member. Since 2011, 21 elected officials have been kicked out, 3 resigned and 12 survived the vote. The Peace Garden State ranks in the top 15 in use over the life of this blog.

Michigan: White River Township referendum looks to overturn solar ordinance in same effort as recall push against Supervisor

Petitioners are now seeking to put a referendum on the ballot to overturn a solar ordinance in White River Township. The vote could take place on the same time as a recall against Supervisor Mike Cockerill, who is currently facing petitions over his support for a solar project. Cockerill has land that will be leased to the renewable project. The petition has already been approved, though Cockerill is suing to stop the recall (though the appeal has been denied).

Kansas: Petitions taken out against Leavenworth School Board member

Petitions have been taken out against Leavenworth School Board Member Vanessa Reid after Reid took a picture of the lead petitioner's child's artwork that featured a rainbow flag. Reid than shared the picture in a newsletter from Representative Pat Proctor (R). Proctor claimed that the flag showed that the school library was "doing more indoctrinating than education."

California: Petitions taken out against Sonoma Valley School Trustee

Sonoma Valley School Board Trustee John Kelly is facing petitions over complaints about a school construction/configuration plans. Petitioners need 1049 signatures in 60 days. 

Colorado: Two Walsenburg Councilmembers survive recall votes; three officials resign

Two Walsenburg Councilmembers, Veronica Maes (103-105) and Nick Vigil (105-114) survived recall votes. 

Previously,  Mayor Charles Bryant and Councilmember Greg Daniels and Carmen Lara resigned rather than face recalls that made the ballot.

An earlier effort against Bryant and two other council members, Ricky Jennings and Don Martinez, failed to make the ballot. Bryant is protesting the recall. 

The issue seems to be an internal battle in the government and the mayor has encouraged the recall effort against what he calls a "culture of corruption" saying they need a "hard reset." Apparently, the mayor and  Jennings (who is mayor pro tem) are on one side of the aisle. 

New Mexico: Edgewood looks to recall law on banning access to abortion

Edgewood voters are looking to recall a town legislation on abortion. The law, passed by the town's commission, bans access to abortion pills and materials. Petitioners need 20% of tutnout (an avereage of the different offices in the last election. Petitioners need 240 signatures by May 26.

Massachusetts: Easthampton School Board effort moves forward

Easthampton School Board member Cynthia Kwiecinski is facing petitions after the school board rescinded an offer to for a new superintendent over claims that he used the word "Ladies" to address them in an email. There is also an online discussion to recall all seven board members. Kwiecinski is up for reelection in November.

Petitioners need 2517 signatures in 21 days to get on the ballot (after getting 400 signatures in the first stage of the process).

Washington: A look at Signature Verification efforts against Richland School Board members

A look at the signature verification effort in the Richland School Board Recall. 

Nebraska: No signatures handed in against Kearney School Board member

No signatures were handed in for the recall effort against  Kearney School Board Member Dave Brandt over the transathelete issue. Brandt was one of two members to vote against a requirement to restrict 6-12 grade athletes to teams of their biological gender. The lead petitioner, James Clark is the Buffalo County Republican Party Vice Chairman.

Petitioners needed 2227 signatures (35% of the top vote-getter in the last election) in 30 days. 

Michigan: More discussion on Gun Control Recalls

More discussion on recalls targeting senators who supported gun control efforts, though potential petitioners still haven't named any names. Here's more on this.

Arizona: Petitions taken out against State Senator

Arizona State Senator Justine Wadsack (R) is facing petitions over her support for bills banning books on gender issues, making it a felony to take children to a drag show, homeless issues and ending the State Bar requirement for attorneys (the Supreme Court would be in charge of licensing). 

Petitioners need 30,981 signatures to get her on the ballot. Wadsack won office with less than 2800 votes.

Louisiana: Elton Mayor facing petitions

Petitions have been filed against Elton Mayor Kesia Skinner Lemoine over complaints about election irregularities in her 2022 victory. There have been claims that three dozen people had questionable credentials. Some voters claimed homestead exemptions in other parishes or used vacant lots or homes that didn't exist. Lemoine won a runoff 211-178. Brandon Kelly, who lost the runoff, seems to be one of the organizers of the recall.

Petitioners would need 276 signatures (40% of registered voters) in 90 days to get on the ballot.

Tuesday, May 9, 2023

Texas: Rockport passes proposition allowing for cancellation of recall after resignation

Rockport voters approved an amendment (Proposition R) that allows for the cancellation of a recall election when the official resigns before the vote. The vote was fairly close, 373-327. 

North Dakota: Three Williston Basin School Board Members make the recall ballot

Williston Basin School Board President Chris Jundt, VP Kyle Renner and member John Kasmer will be facing a recall vote on August 8. The effort also targeted Cory Swint, Heather Wheeler and Sarah Williams, though no word on what happened.

Jundt took office in winning a recall in 2019 against school board members

Dennis Nehring, one of the leaders of this recall effort, won a recall in 2020.

The group backing the recall appears to be connected with Moms for Liberty, the far-right group that has looked to ban books in libraries and schools. 

California: Q&A with lead petitioner in Shasta County Supervisor recall effort

Here's a Q&A with the lead petitioner against Shasta County Supervisor Kevin Crye. The recall is over the vote to cancel a voting systems contract with Dominion Voting and requiring handcounting, which will cost the county millions. Petitioners need 4151 signatures to get to the ballot. This is part of the fight in Shasta and Crye seems to be connected to the far-right groups, one of whom led the successful recall of Supervisor Leonard Moty.

Colorado: Petitions approved for Grand Junction School Board President

Petitions have been approved for the recall of Grand Junction D51 School Board President Andrea Haitz over a decision to close a middle school and debates over two elementary school closings (and claims of violating open meeting laws). Haitz was part of a conservative bloc that won power in 2021.

Petitioners need about 15,000 signatures by July 7. 

Sunday, May 7, 2023

Nebraska: Wauneta Commissioner facing petitions

Petitions have been taken out against Wauneta Commissioner Duane Dinnel seemingly over road closures. Petitioners need 187 signatures in 30 days to get on the ballot.

Texas: Double loss for Denton Councilmember -- ousted in recall and loses reelection run

Denton City Council member Jesse Davis lost both his recall and reelection race on May 6th, resulting in an unusual (though not unprecedented) event, though the results are really worth looking at

Davis very narrowly lost the recall but got blown out in the reelection race. Even though they were on the ballot on the same time, Davis got significantly more votes in the recall.

The recall was 51.8-48.2% seeking Davis' removal (1518-1412).

In the reelection race, which Davis lost 60-38%, Paul Meltzer received 1840 to Davis' 1147 (a third candidate got 63 votes).

So this means that 265 people voted for Davis in the recall but not in the reelection vote. 

Having two races for one candidate is unusual, but not unprecedented. Davis' two-year term ended in May, so just lost office for a brief time.

The petition was over Davis' refusal to vote for decriminalizing low-level marijuana cases (after voters approved such a law by 71%) and against a resolution that the city not use funds to investigate violations of Texas' abortion law. The recall seemed to be a reaction to the removal of Councilmember Alison Maguire in November (Maguire's attorney is a volunteer representing the petitioners). Davis was part of the conservative group while Maguire was recalled due to redistricting changes that pushed her out of a more liberal district. 

Florida: Petitions taken out against Apopka Mayor

Petitions have been taken out against Apopka Mayor Bryan Nelson over the death of a firefighter (which petitioners claim is due to lack of training/supervision), though there is also a firing of the city attorney. There were two no-confidence votes against the Fire Chief from the firefighters' union and the city council. 

Petitioners need 1762 signatures by May 18 to then get to the second stage of signature gathering. The article doesn't note how many signatures are needed to get to the ballot from there.

Michigan: Petitions taken out against three Webber Township officials

Webber Township Supervisor Ernie Wogatzke, Clerk Pat Williams and Treasurer Kathryn Young are facing recall threats over a host of issues, including claims of unlawful expenditures and nepotism. The lead petitioner is a former deputy clerk who claims she was pushed out of office by the three. There are also complaints about the independent auditors. 

North Dakota: Recall against Horace City Council member makes August 15 ballot

The recall effort against Horace City Council Member Stephanie Landstrom has succeeded in getting the signatures and she will be on the ballot on August 15. 

The recall was over a vote to pause a program that gave home buyers a two-year property tax break. The recall effort was backed by realtors.

Petitioners needed 98 signatures. 

Two Horace Council members were ousted in a recall in 2021. 

Wednesday, May 3, 2023

Michigan: Keene Township Supervisor and Treasurer ousted

Keene Township Supervisor Robert Simpson and Treasurer Kara Albert (both Republicans) were ousted in a recall vote. 

Simpson lost to Bob Schafer 316-302. Albert lost to Taylor Lewis 304-302, with Denise Oesch receiving 15 votes.

The recall was over their support for solar projects.

Michigan: Split Decision in Cato Township recalls; Supervisor and Trustee ousted and Clerk survives

Split decision in Cato Township as Supervisor Larry Gilbert and Trustee Jourdan Lindsay lost their recall vote, though Clerk Todd Lincoln survived. The recalls are all over votes to approve wind and solar energy ordinances, as have been many in Michigan over the last year. 

All of the officials are Republicans. Gilbert lost to Brandi Clark Hubbard, 353-246. Lindsay lost to Marcy Myers, 319-274 and Lincoln beat Genny Towne, 322-275.

Michigan: Milan Township Trustee and Clerk lose recall votes

Milan Township Trustee Robert Dopkowski and Clerk Barbara Collins both lost their recall election over the votes opposing rescinding a solar ordinance, which was amended to allow large developments in industrial and agricultural-zoned districts.

Dopkowski (NP) got 117 votes, losing to Nicholas Straub (R) who received 313.  Thomas McGettigan (NP) got 31. 

Collins (R)  lost to Stephanie Kozar (NP), 321-138,

Michigan: Adams Township Supervisor and Clerk ousted in recall vote

Adams Township Clerk Stephanie Scott (R) and Supervisor Mark Nichols appears to have lost their recall votes, with Scott failing 406-214 to Suzy Roberts and Nichols losing to former GOP official Randy Johnson, 394-222. The slogan for the recall was "Make Adams Township boring again."

Scott was accused of removing a tabulation from an election device, which has led to a State Police investigation. She was then banned from running the 2021 election by the Secretary of State. Nichols voted against spending $5,500 for a new ballot tabulator and publicly supported Scott's actions.

343 signatures were handed in, with 316 validated. They needed 264. 

Nichols won office in 2018 in a recall and survived one a year later.

Arizona: Cochise County Supervisor recall fails

The recall effort against Cochise County Supervisor Tom Crosby (R), with petitioners claiming that they got 4300 signatures. They needed 4865 signatures to get the recall on the ballot. The recall is over his refusal to certify the November votes of the county due to baseless claims of election deniers.

Crosby supporters were also accused of threating petitioners.

Arizona: Recall effort threatened against Governor

A number of Republican groups are threatening a recall effort against Governor Katie Hobbs (D) over false claims of voter fraud after Hobbs won the election. Petitioners cannot start the recall until the end of the 6 month grace period (June 23). The article notes that they would need 639,872 signatures in 120 days.

North Dakota: Petitions still out against Grand Forks City Council President facing petitions

The recall effort against Grand Forks City Council President Dana Sande is facing a recall effort, seemingly over the effort to bring a corn mill to the town (plan was killed after the Air Force called in a national security threat, due to the fact that it was owned by a China-based company and near an air force base). Petitioners need 1318 signatures. They originally needed it by May 25, but due to a refiling, they now have until June 12.

Petitioner Kevin Wilson is planning on running for the seat. He seems to have moved into town in June.

It seems like the last recall in the city was against Councilmember John Hoff in 2000.

Washington: Signatures handed in against three Richland School Board members

Signatures have been filed in the recall effort against three Richland School Board members Semi Bird, Audra Byrd and Kari Williams. Petitioners handed in over 18000 signatures. They need 5352 for Byrd, 5293 for Bird and 4705 for Williams.

The recall is over their vote to make mask mandates optional, which allegedly violates a state law that mandated masks to fight the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Washington State Supreme Court has approved the recall effort, which because Washington is a malfeasance standard/judicial recall state, needed a showing of a violation of state law.

California: Recall effort started against State Senator

State Senator Aisha Wahab (D) is facing a recall effort, though the specific reason isn't clear yet.

Wahab sponsored a bill banning caste-based discrimination which has received push back from some Indian-Americans who are said that it may result in racial profiling.

Wahab also made a comment on a bill about banning legislative staffers from becoming lobbyists for two years, which led to complaints from a workplace sexual harassment group that argues the bill will hold back its staffers.

The Vice Chair of the Marin County Republican Central Committee Thomas Montgomery is listed as treasurer on the recall effort. Petitioners would need about 43000 valid signatures to get on the ballot.