Recall petitions on Thursday Council agenda
UPDATE: There will be a "No Recall" rally at 5 p.m. Thursday on City Hall Plaza. More details as they become available.
Non-Councilor Randy Sullivan has put the recall of Councilors Jim Mautino and Chris Medlock on Thursday night's City Council agenda. There will be two votes on each councilor. Tulsans need to be down at City Hall Thursday night for the 6 p.m. meeting, ready to speak out in opposition this attempt to call a recall election on the basis of questionable petitions with questionable signatures. You should be at City Hall by Thursday at 5:45 -- give yourself time to park -- and you should sign up to speak on items 3b, 3c, 7a, and 7b.
(By the way, if there's an event at the Convention Center and they're charging for parking, tell the attendant that you're there for the Council meeting and you won't be charged the $3.)
Here's the first agenda item: "Affirmation or reversal of City Clerk's determination that the petitions and signatures on the supporting petitions seeking the recall... comply with the requirements of the Tulsa City Charter." This has been listed as one of the "Mayor's Items," very early in the meeting, right after a series of appointments and reappointments that should be routine. That's why its crucial to be in the room before the meeting begins at 6:00 p.m.
As City Clerk Mike Kier admitted last Tuesday, he has not fulfilled the charter requirement that he verify that the signatures on the petition correspond with the signatures in the voter registration records. It would be irresponsible for the Council to vote to affirm, and Tulsans need to be present to make sure they hear that message loud and clear.
The second agenda item reads as follows: "Resolution of Notice to the Tulsa County Election Board of a Special Election to be held in the City of Tulsa, Oklahoma on May 10, 2005, to recall... and directing the Mayor to call the election." Note the date. It would be illegal for the Council to act on March 17 to call a May 10 election. State law requires at least 60 days between calling an election and the election date.
Randy Sullivan has included the two election resolutions in the "Council items" section items of the agenda, no doubt intending to inconvenience citizens as much as possible by separating the items as much as possible.
The fact that the "affirmation or reversal" is not described as a resolution to affirm or reverse is a bit of legal trickery. A resolution requires a majority vote of the whole Council -- five yes votes. By not calling it a resolution, the City Attorney's office is making the case that all they need is a majority of a majority -- a majority of whatever quorum happens to be present -- three votes out of five, four votes out of six or seven. Once again the City Attorney's office is opening up the City (and us taxpayers) to a lawsuit by trying to monkey around with the law for the benefit of the Cockroach Caucus.
Please plan to be at City Hall Thursday night.
This was published on March 15, but I'm bumping the date to keep it at the top through Thursday.
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