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Kay Walters and Sharon Struck recall, Deschutes County, Oregon (2014)

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An effort to recall Kay Walters and Sharon Struck from their positions as members of the Terrebonne Domestic Water District’s board in Deschutes County, Oregon was successful, as both women were recalled from their positions during an April 1, 2014 election. It was the first successful recall in the county in 12 years.[1] Residents became upset and launched the recall effort because their water bills were approximately three times higher than was routine.[2] Two other board members, Jay Walters and David Dow, resigned in wake of the recall effort.[3]

Election results

Below are the official election results:[2]

Kay Walters Recall (2014)
ResultVotesPercentage
Approveda Yes 134 64.11%
No7535.89%
Sharon Struck Recall (2014)
ResultVotesPercentage
Approveda Yes 124 59.62%
No8440.38%

Background

Problems for the board members started in June 2013 when a resignation and a death left the district understaffed, according to Walters, with only one full-time staff member to read water meters. Some residents received water bills as high as $500, when they were accustomed to paying approximately $150. In an attempt to ameliorate disgruntled customers, Walters said the board offered them a 20 percent discount on the faulty bills and extended the payment due date. However, residents were not satisfied with this solution and moved forward with the recall. At the time of the election, the water district was tasked with overseeing Terrebonne's water supply, and the board was responsible for settling disputes.[3]

Path to the ballot

See also: Laws governing recall in Oregon

In Oregon, the number of valid signatures required to force a recall election is 15% of the total number of votes cast in the public officer’s electoral district for all candidates for Governor at the last election at which a candidate for Governor was elected to a full term.

See also

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