Kelvin Wurdeman recall, Wayne County, Nebraska (2012)

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A vote about whether to recall Kelvin Wurdeman from his position on the county commission of Wayne County, Nebraska was scheduled for November 20, 2012,[1] but on November 14, 2012, a judge issued a permanent injunction blocking the recall election from taking place.[2] Wurdeman has served as the District 1 commissioner since 1999.

Reasons for recall

Kelly Hammer initiated the recall effort. In September 2012, Wurdeman plead no contest to stealing and selling a truckload of publicly owned scrap metal. Wurdeman took a county-owned vehicle loaded with scrap metal to a local business and had the business write a check out in his son's name. He later cashed the check, forging his son's name.[1] Wurdeman was sentenced on November 5.[3] On the recall petition, Wurdeman was accused of removing dirt from one landowner and moving it “to another piece of property without talking to the landowner and getting permission.”[2]

Path to the ballot

Signatures were submitted on September 20 and verified on September 21. A recall election was scheduled for November 20, 2012.[1]

Legal action

On November 14, Wayne County District Court Judge Robert Ensz issued a temporary and permanent injunction preventing the scheduled recall election from taking place. Wurdeman argued that the petition paperwork against him was defective, in part because the petitions failed to state whether signature gatherers were paid or volunteer. Ensz ruled that the paperwork error was "not a technical omission” but was a “material and substantial defect in the recall petitions involving the plaintiff." As a result of the judge's decision, the previously scheduled recall election was canceled, and no recall election took place.[2]

See also