Friday, November 27, 2015

Texas; Petitions against Denton's council member over fracking rejected due to filing too early timing issues

The attempt to recall Council member Joey Hawkins was rejected, because the signatures were handed in too early. Hawkins was elected on May 9 and sworn in on May 19, when the 180 day clock starts (petitioners cannot submit a recall until the official has been in office 6 months). Petitioner handed in 125 signatures and need 76. The issue is Hawkins vote to overturn an initiative banning hydraulic fracking.

There is also an ongoing effort to recall council member Kevin Roden.

Oklahoma: Midwest City Mayor recall set to make the ballot

Petitioners handed in almost 1100 signatures for the recall of Mayor Dee Collins. They only needed 433. A former police officer is going to run (Collins himself is a former police officer).

South Dakota: Two Hartford Councilmembers resign after vote to reject mayoral recall petitions

The vote was 4-3, but the resignations were one from each side.

Texas: Crystal City Mayor, Councilmen recall not moving forward due to "absurd" interpretation of high signature bar requirement

Crazy story here, but one that fits into the usual pattern: Efforts to recall Crystal City Mayor Ricardo Lopez and Councilmen Roel Mata and Marco Rodriguez have hit one of the usual sources of trouble -- administrative attempts to kill a recall.

The City Attorney/Manager James Jonas III (who is described as the "ultimate target of the recall" for reasons seen below), tossed out more than 1200 signatures after ruling that the petitions require more signatures based on an extremely novel interpretation of the law. Apparently (and I can't verify this info online -- Crystal City's got a big Popeye picture on the webpage, but not much else), 1931 people voted in the general election on May 9 that sets the standard for the recall. Crystal City has a requirement that petitioners get 51% of turnout, which would seem to require about 966 signatures. However, Jonas has decided to count the total votes of both council races combined as the number needed -- which is something over 3600 votes. Therefore, petitioners would need over 1800 signatures

A former Director of Elections for Texas (in the Secretary of State's office) calls the ruling "wrong" and "absurd." I can't recall a similar interpretation of the signature law, though also worth noting that the 51% requirement is extremely high.

The petition lists Jonas' contract, increasing taxes and utility fees and a failure to provide an audit. However Jonas seems to be the issue -- he is a former Republican DC lobbyist who was once jailed for failure to pay child support (he pays between $11K-$12K a month in child support). His pay is apparently three times what the town formerly spent on a city manager and part-time city attorney and his $216,000 salary is about half of the town's total $500,000 yearly property tax receipts.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Kansas: Topeka council member facing recall threats over aggravated battery against children charges

Topeka Council member Jonathan Schumm is facing recall threats due to an investigation of aggravated battery against children. The article notes the difficulty of getting a recall on the ballot

Arizona: Recall effort against Tucson School Board fails to hand in signatures

Here and some more info here.

California: Some more details on the recall effort against Carson City Clerk

There has been a number of stories about the recall of Carson City Clerk Jim Dear. This is the first one that I've seen that focuses on his proposing a statute of Ataturk.

Illinois: Chicago Tribune Columnist argues that lack of recall law protections Mayor Emmanuel

Here -- this is after the release of the video of the Laquan McDonald shooting. It notes that Buffalo Grove has passed a law in 2010 to recall one specific councilwoman, and the state has one as well for the Governor.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Louisiana: Washington Police Chief targeted in recall

Washington Police Chief Ronelle Broussard is facing petitions, as 323 people (40%) signed the petition. It is now at the Parish register of voters record. Broussard is in his second term, and the criticism seems to be based on his actual work performance.

Massachusetts: Enough signatures handed in for recall of Rowley Water Commissioner

Tim Toomey is facing an upcoming recall.

Arizona: Two Members of Apache County's Concho Fire Board Kicked out

Here -- looks like Tracy Candelaria and Pat Murphy lost, though hard to find any more detail than that.

Arizona: One Central Arizona College Governing Board Member resigns before recall vote

Rita Nader, facing a recall over tax rate increases, resigned rather than face vote.

New Jersey: Lopatcong Township mayor threatened with recall

Lopatcong Township Mayor Tom McKay (R) is facing recall threats over a contentious relationship with the Township Clerk/Administrator and claims that he sexually harassed a township employee. McKay has only been in office since January.

Wisconsin: Arcadia voters oust incumbent Counil members

Mayor John Kimmel has been kicked, defeated by Rob Reichwin (who won with almost 70% of the voters).

Idaho: Signatures handed in for Driggs Recall

Driggs Mayor Hyrum Johnson is under the fun, with petitioners needing 154 votes in the election.

North Dakota: Barnes County North School District Chairwoman facing petitions

Barnes County North School District Board Chairwoman Lori Carlson is facing petitions following the resignation of Superintendent, Principal, and Activities.

Michigan: Greenleaf Township signatures handed in

Petitions were handed in against Greenleaf Township Clerk Lori Mazure over allegations of her using zoning documents to benefit her husband's successful recall run. Petitioners handed in 114 signatures, they need 50.

Kansas: Sedgwick County Commissioner recall rejected by DA

The recall effort against Sedgwick County Commission Chairman Richard Ranzau has been throw out by the district attorney, who claims that the petitioners have not stated a valid claim. Ranzau voted to reduce health care funding..Petitioners would have needed over 9500 signatures. Petitioners may appeal.
Read more here:

Thursday, November 19, 2015

North Dakota: Barnes County North School Board members facing recall threats

Barnes County North School Board Members Lori Carlson and Dan Size are facing recall threats over claims of micromanagement, arrogance, not listening to parents and not attending graduation and other functions. The recent resignation of a superintendent seems to be the impetus.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

How Election Timing Matters

Looks like an interesting book by Sarah Anzia.

Myanmar: Discussion on recall law continues


Arizona: Camp Verde Vice Mayor rescinds recall

Vice Mayor Bruce George resigned last week in order to avoid an expensive city recall (the issue was an increase in sales taxes). However, the court held that the recall had to go forward regardless of his resignation, so he has rescinded it and will be facing the voters on March 8.

Oregon: Clatskanie Mayor survives recall

Mayor Diane Pohl survived the recall vote with 53.44 voting to retain her. Turn out was 403-851 voters.The issue was the resignation of the police chief over allegations of racist remarks and how soon the resignation was accepted.

The recall arose in response to the Aug. 19 resignation of Police Chief Marvin Hoover following allegations that he made racist remarks. Two Clatskanie officers told state officials that Hoover imitated a howling monkey and then sang Dixie during a discussion about a complaint of racism. The complaint was filed July 20 with the Oregon Department of Public Safety Standards and Training, which has yet to make a finding in the case (as of today).
The recall petition asserted that Pohl should not have rushed to accept Hoover’s resignation prior to completion of the state investigation. Hoover was given four months pay, about $27,000, and also gets to collect retirement pay.
“Had mayor Pohl taken proper action, it would have saved the taxpayers of ... Clatskanie from undue monetary expense,” the petition asserted.
Pohl claimed that the city put Hoover on paid leave immediately upon hearing the allegations and that she accepted his resignation on the advice of the city attorney and Hoover’s lawyer.
Another completely unrelated matter became a backdrop the the recall effort. Pohl’s husband, city planning commissioner Ray Pohl, faces charges that he exposed his genitals o to a worker at a drive-through coffee stand over a two year period. The alleged victim finally filed a complaint with the Oregon State Police, saying his connections left her nowhere to complain in Clatskanie. Ray Pohl’s case is not yet scheduled for trial, but a pretrial conference is slated for March 16.
Pohl has declined comment on her husband’s case.
Elections officials said 851 voters were eligible to cast ballots in the race, and turnout was at 43 percent as of late Tuesday morning.
“This is most loving community I have ever been in. I’m grateful to be mayor and to be able to represent them in a positive way,” Pohl said.

Kansas: Petitions finally filed against Sedgwick Commissioner over immigration/WIC proposal

Here and here's some more on the subject

Missouri: Jennings Mayor facing petitions

Jennings Mayor Yolanda Fountain-Henderson is facing a recall effort after the Mayor allegedly sued the city to challenge an ordinance that guarantees non-elected city employees four-year terms (I've never heard of a law like that). Petitioners need more than 2000 signatures.

Arizona: Group plans on releasing signature number against Top School Official in December

This is against Dianne Douglas and they need a whole lot (366K) signatures to get on the ballot.

Alaska: Petitions against Four Anchorage School Board members rejected by city

Petitions to recall Anchorage School Board President Kameron Perez-Verdia and board members Tam Agosti-Gisler, Pat Higgins and Kathleen Plunkett were all rejected by the city. The petitioners claim that the officials violated state regs over the vote for school bond debt reimbursement by putting up signs for bonds and paying for a public survey on capital projects.

South Dakota: Hartford City Council rejects Mayoral recall petition

Hartford City Council voted 4-3 to reject a petition to recall the mayor (petitioners had 314 signatures). The council claims that the issues did not meet the malfeasance cause standard.

Massachusetts: Townsend Selectmen petitions require separate petitions

I've actually been asked this question before, and so apparently has the town counsel for Townsend -- if you are trying to recall two or more officials, you need separate petitions and separate signatures for each one. In Townsend's case, they are trying to recall Chairwoman Carolyn Smart and Gordy Clark. Petitions need 10% of registereds, with at least 125 from each precinct -- that means at least 614 signatures, and thy have 21 days. There is a turnout requirement -- 25% of registered voters must participate for the recall to count.

The issue is claimed open meeting act violations and the filling of a town administrator position.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Missouri: Kansas City Council face petition threats over failure to agree to submit tax incentives to voters

Kansas City Council members are facing petition threats after they didn't vote to approve petitions that calls for the city to submit tax incentives to the voters.

Virginia: Article on Portsmouth Mayor recall effort

Here and here's what it's about.

California: Rosamond Community Services District Board of Directors facing petitions

Rosamond Community Services District Board of Directors Ed MacKay, Olaf Landsgaard and Dennis Shingledecker are all facing petitions  over claims that they have spent too much and turned over too much power to the nearby city of Lancaster.

Petitioners need 1676 valids by December 8.

Michigan: Filing against Governor Snyder rejected

A hand-written petition to recall Governor Rick Snyder (R) over Flint's water troubles was rejected by the board of canvassers. The petitioner, Angelo Scott Brown had previously signed petitions multiple times in the recall attempt against Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick.

Alaska: Barrow North Slope Borough Mayor facing petitions

Barrow's North Slope Borough Mayor Charlotte Brower is facing petitions for a recall over allegations of campaign finance violations and misuse of public funds, specifically $8400 to send five of her grandchildren to basketball camp and tens of thousands on cakes and crafts and clothes bought from her daughters. One of her daughters is married to the former borough assembly president (who was defeated in a runoff this week).

Alaska is a maleasance standard/judicial recall state, and requires a specific showing of cause.  Petitioners need 492 signatures by January 8 (25% of turnout).

Texas: Signatures handed in against Denton City Council member over hydraulic fracking vote

125 signatures were filed against Denton City Council member Joey Hawkins. Petitioners need 76 valids. If Hawkins loses the article says that seat apparently will stay empty until a special election on the next regular election date, which is November 8 (this seems wrong, but we'll see).

The petitions started after Hawkins (and Kevin Roden, who is also facing petitions) voted to repeal a citizens initiative that banned hydraulic fracking in Denton (there were questions over whether the ban could have been defended -- regardless, the Texas legislature overrode it).

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Arizona: Guadalupe mayoral recall set for March 8

Mayor Rebecca Jimenez is facing a recall vote on March 8 over charges that she committed welfare fraud (she failed to disclose that her children's father was living with her).

Arizona: Central Arizona College Governing Board Member calls petitioners "transplanted out-of-state infiltrators"

Rita Nader, who is facing a March 8 recall race, has attacked the leader of the recall effort against her as a "bully" and claims tat the effort is being led by "Transplanted out-of-state infiltrators. Petitioners handed in 1817 signatures, 1525 were valid. They needed 1326.

California: Hollister School Board recalls threatend over Brown Act replacement

The Hollister School Board voted 3-1 to replace former Board President Ben Flores without holding a real meeting to discuss their choices. This is alleged to constitute a Brown Act -- aka  Open Meeting Law -- violation. The petitioners are gathering signatures looking for an election against the newly appointed commissioner Mike Baldwin. This isn't a recall -- petitioners need at least 265 signatures (1.5 % registereds).