Posts tagged: Coeur d'Alene recall
If the recall attempt fails (according to City Clerk Susan Weathers):
From County Clerk Cliff Hayes' office: “This afternoon Kootenai County Clerk Cliff Hayes announced further progress on signature verifications for the Coeur d’Alene Recall petitions. “With more petitions verified and checked, most signatures are valid. However, the rejection rate has increased”, Hayes said. Approximate signature rejection percentages for all Council members are now 18%; the signature acceptance rate has fallen to 82%.” In a follow-up email, Hayes reports that petition checkers have gone through 30% of the signatures so far. At 18% disqualification (up 6% from the first day's counting), the signature totals would be as follows:
BTW, you can find a link leading to all the recall petitions here
DFO: Two key numbers: 4311 (amount of valid signatures needed to trigger a recall election) and 20% (the amount of disqualified signatures needed for Mayor Sandi Bloem to survive; others would need slightly lower percentage). BTW, these numbers are consistent with the ones anti-Recallers have tabulated in their unofficial monitoring and perusual of the petition signatures. They had a total of roughly 12% on the first day of counting signatures likely from local Tea Party/GOP/anti-tax lists. Then, the number of disqualifications began to grow significantly. I keep hearing from anti-Recallers that it's going to be a squeaker.
Item: Resign? Not us, targets declare: Cd'A officials plan to stay in office if election occurs/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d'Alene Press
More Info: The four Coeur d'Alene city incumbents targeted by a recall effort said Wednesday they wouldn't resign if the measure makes it to an election. Coeur d'Alene City Council members Mike Kennedy, Woody McEvers and Deanna Goodlander and Mayor Sandi Bloem each said they would see a recall election to the end rather than surrender their seats. “I definitely will not resign,” Bloem said.
Question: Do you agree with the decisions by Mayor Sandi Bloem and the three targeted council members not to resign if this moves forward to an election?
This morning Kootenai County Clerk Cliff Hayes announced Tuesday’s progress on signature verifications for the Coeur d’Alene Recall petitions. “With the first day’s work completed, we’re finding most petition signatures are valid”, he said in a news release. “Or few of the petition signatures have been rejected, depending on how you want to look at it”, Hayes continued. (Huckleberries estimates that 20 percent disqualification is needed for the four elected Coeur d'Alene officials to survive the first round of the recall attempt.) Approximate verification percentages for each Council member are:
Hayes said most of the invalid signatures were people with a Coeur d’Alene mailing address, but who don’t actually reside within the city limits according to the Secretary of State’s voter registration data base. And he stressed that these percentages are approximate, and “are only one day’s worth of information. The percentages could, and probably will, change tomorrow.”
DFO: If DQ percentage holds, Mayor Sandi Bloem would have 4738 valid signatures for recall (4311 needed); Mike Kennedy 4634; Deanna Goodlander 4676; and Woody McEvers 4635.
In a Coeur d'Alene Press story today, national recall expert Jason Spivak says Mayor Sandi Bloem and other targeted city elected officials would have a better chance of surviving recall election if it was held on Nov. 6 rather than Aug. 28: “That's because an August election would see lower than normal voter turnout, and the petition gatherers have already proven they're motivated enough to go to the polls. In a presidential election - Nov. 6 - more people will be casting votes for incumbents anyway, and that higher turnout could be more likely to vote in favor of the targeted city incumbents.” This, of course, if another valid signatures were gathered to trigger a recall election. More here.
Coeur d’AleneCity Clerk Susan Weathers spells out the steps she will take in handling the recall petitions beginning tomorrow (Friday):
“First, this process is not required by law but rather a process as a result of the request made by the Recall people and the fact that I have endeavored to, not only with this process but throughout this entire recall process, to be as open and transparent as I can humanly be.
Question: Which office is being more transparent in preparing to verify Coeur d'Alene recall petitions — Coeur d'Alene clerk's office or Kootenai County clerk's office?
Kootenai County Clerk Cliff Hayes has withdrawn his lawsuit against the city of Coeur d'Alene, seeking to clarify the deadline date for the attempted recall of Coeur d'Alene Mayor Sandi Bloem and three council members, Deanna Goodlander, Woody McEvers and Mike Kennedy. Acting on behalf of Hayes, Prosecutor Barry McHugh wrote to Coeur d'Alene counsel Michael L. Haman that Hayes was swayed by an opinion issued by Secretary of State Ben Ysursa on May 1. Ysursa said that a city recall attempt, including verification of signatures by the clerk's office, must be complete within 75 days (June 19, in this case). According to McHugh's letter, Hayes plans to turn over all verified signatures by the June 19 deadline but will continue to count additional signatures beyond that deadline to complete his duty (in case the law is interpreted differently than Ysursa suggests). You can read McHugh's letter & supporting documents here.
Question: Does this mean the community's conspiracy theorists will say that Hayes has gone over to the other side?
Item: Cd'A gets state's vote: Officials expected to meet about recall lawsuit today/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d'Alene Press
More Info: The Secretary of State's office said Tuesday the 75-day timeline for recall petitioners to gather signatures includes the time it takes the Kootenai County Clerk to certify them. The letter sent by Secretary of State Ben Ysursa said that interpretation is the official position of the state's chief election officer and intended to help clarify a dispute between Kootenai County and the city of Coeur d'Alene in regard to how long signature collectors have to collect signatures in their attempt to oust four city officials.
Question: Does this remain unclear to anyone but County Clerk Cliff Hayes & County Prosecutor Barry McHugh & the Recall leaders?
Secretary of State Ben Ysursa, pictured, has written a letter to Coeur d'Alene City Clerk Susan Weathers & Kootenai County Clerk Cliff Hayes, confirming that Weathers is right regarding the June 19 deadline to collect & certify recall petitions. The 75-day deadline includes the time the county clerk will spend verifying the signatures, said Ysursa in a letter sent today that confirms an April 18 letter sent by Ysursa's Chief Deputy Tim Hurst. Idaho code requires that “the recall petition must be perfected with the required number of certified signatures within 75 days following the date of approval as to form,” Ysursa wrote in his two-page letter. You can read it here.
Question: Don't you think it's time for Hayes and Prosecutor Barry McHugh to drop their lawsuit against the city to clarify the recall deadline?
On their Stop the Recall online page, organizers Sara Meyer & Jennifer Drake have created a petition in support of the recall targets. They write: “We have created an online petition for people to sign in support of Mayor Bloem and Council Members Goodlander, Kennedy, and McEvers. Unlike the recall petition, ours is purely symbolic, but we are still hoping to blow the recall signatures out of the water! All you have to do is go to our webpage and click on “Sign Petition”, or go to the petition webpage and sign there. Either way, it is simple and will only take 30 seconds. Please sign and tell your friends and family to do so as well. Let's get thousands of names on there opposing the recall!” You can sign the petition here.
Question: Do you plan to sign up?
If you haven’t been to Coeur d’Alene in a while, the transformation is remarkable: the mixed-use Riverstone development, the popular Kroc Community Center, a handsome new library, an array of higher education projects under way near North Idaho College and the Prairie Trail bicycle path. Downtown and Midtown boast many other improvements. The city has all the signs of a community with a plan, and the leadership to see it through. Next up is a redesigned and upgraded McEuen Park, which would give the city another enviable waterfront park. But what isn’t readily apparent to visitors is a political undertow that hopes to drag down progress by recalling Mayor Sandi Bloem (pictured) and three members of the City Council: Woody McEvers, Deanna Goodlander and Mike Kennedy. Their crimes? There isn’t one/Spokesman-Review Editorial Board. More here.
Quotable Quote: State Rep. Kathy Sims, R-Coeur d’Alene, a longtime foe of urban renewal, once called the development of the Kroc Center a “criminal conspiracy.” She seethes at a recreational and arts facility that any community would love to have, because the city donated and prepared a former gravel pit as the site of this gleaming gift from philanthropist Joan Kroc.
First, I have to say that Editor Mike Patrick and the Coeur d'Alene Press have done a decent job staying neutral in the Coeur d'Alene recall attempt. Too decent. I wish Mike would take sides and slam the attempted overthrow of our properly elected mayor and three council members. But all the trying by Mike and his news staff to thread the needle on this tough issue has been for naught as far as cranky Bill McCrory and OpenCDA.com is concerned. McCrory grouses in his latest rant that the Recallers have been deceived by a Press editorial defending its neutral stand. The source of his whine? A letter by Ken Burchell in today's Coeur d'Alene Press. Grouses McCrory: “We at OpenCdA were wrong, and we sadly admit today that we, like others in the community, bought into the deception game the Coeur d’Alene Press is playing with its readers.” Full McCrory complaint here.
Sara Meyer & Jennifer Drake of the Stop the Recall movement began mailing out a letter to every registered voter in Coeur d'Alene today, electronically first and then a hard copy next week — 21,600 residents, 14,500 homes. The letter challenges four reasons given by the Souza-Sims-Orzell recall group for attempting its overthrow of city government. “Our mayor and council members being targeted for recall have done nothing wrong. They have done nothing illegal or immoral. A recall is an important part of our system of government, but it is a tool to be used in extreme circumstances, warranted by things such as criminal malfeasance or illegal activities. To attempt to recall four oustanding leaders because of an ideological disagreement is a misuse of the system. You can read the letter yourself here. (Jerome A. Pollos' Coeur d'Alene Press photo: Jennifer Drake of the Stop the Recall movement eyeballs recall proponent at City Hall April 4)
In a statement from the Coeur d'Alene Indian Tribe this afternoon, tribal Chairman Chief Allan denounced the recall attempt against Mayor Sandi Bloem and three council members: “As leaders, we do the best we can to gather community input and weigh the options. But at the end of the day, leadership must make difficult and often controversial decisions based on what is in the best interest of the greater community. As an elected official myself, I know the difficulties that come from representing a diverse constituency. Disagreement and differences in opinion are natural in politics no matter where you go and compromise on both sides is necessary. The democratic process has checks and balances already in place for unhappy constituents- they’re called elections.” More here.
The Coeur d'Alene Chamber of Commerce released a statement moments ago, taking a position against the attempted recall of Coeur d'Alene Mayor Sandi Bloem and three Coeur d'Alene City Council members. In a statement signed by chamber board Chairman Darin Hayes and President/CEO Stephen T. Wilson (pictured), the chamber said: “The ability of citizens to recall elected officials is necessary and vital, particularly in instances of unethical, illegal or fraudulent actions or behavior. The reason cited for recall in the petitions filed by RecallCDA meet none of those criteria. The Mayor and named Council Members have been doing exactly what they were elected to do: consider issues and make decisions. Targeting individuals for recall because of a difference of opinion is not an appropriate or valid use of the recall mechanism.” More here.
Nevertheless, despite the absence of criminal or other extremes, a group of citizens is attempting to recall not one, but four elected Coeur d'Alene officials, at least nominally over park improvements. To be fair that's just icing on a cake of dissatisfaction (with lawful, if disapproved, choices) this group has long had. Their view is these officials ignore the populace and want to spend too much public money on what the public does not want. The other view is that the proposed changes have been studied, discussed, are lawful and will use funding specifically designated for this purpose when the urban renewal agency (and its funds) were created. Never mind McEuen Park for the moment. No matter which way you see it, the process itself is at issue as much as the dispute, perhaps even more. A look at recall elections is called for/Sholeh Patrick (pictured), Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.
Question: No matter how you feel about the single issue of McEuen Field, do you want council members Dan Gookin, Steve Adams and Ron Edinger thwarting the 2009 municipal election by deciding who will be mayor and on the council for the next two years?
Petitioners gathering signatures to springboard a recall election on four Coeur d'Alene incumbents will have less than 75 days to collect enough autographs to make that happen. That's the verdict after the Secretary of State's office reversed its initial interpretation of statutes that govern the process. The 75-day timeline to gather signatures includes the 15 business days the Kootenai County Clerk's office will have to certify them, the Secretary of State's office wrote Wednesday in a letter to Coeur d'Alene City Clerk Susan Weathers. That means the city had been correct all along, and the 15-day certification time frame has to be factored into the 75-day window - not added to it/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here. (City of Coeur d'Alene photo: Susan Weathers)
A Coeur d'Alene City Councilman defended his neutral position Tuesday, despite believing some in City Hall want him to take a stand on the recall issue. The city said that's not the case. Any city employee or committee member may become involved in the recall effort - or its counter movement - so long as it's done on their personal time, City Administrator Wendy Gabriel said. And that includes criticizing council members publicly. “If they want to be involved, they have a right to,” Gabriel said Tuesday. “As long as they're not interfering with city business or using city resources.” The issue stems from a Press letter to the editor from the city's Arts Commission chair, Eden Irgens, published April 13, that described Councilman Dan Gookin's relationship to some people tied to the recall group, RecallCdA/Tom Hasslinger, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.
Question: Do you think Councilman Dan Gookin is really neutral re: the RecallCDA attempt?