Nancy Berry, Katy Marie Lyles and Dave Ruesink recall, College Station, Texas (2011)
The recall election took place on May 14, 2011. Early voting for the recall election began on Monday May 2nd and ended on Tuesday May 10th.
Voters chose not to recall Nancy Berry, Katy Marie Lyles, or Dave Ruesink in the May 14th election. More than 70% of voters who turned out voted in favor of keeping the mayor and two council members. The election results are as follows:
Nancy Berry, Proposition 1
Mayor Berry's attempted recall appeared on the May 14, 2011 College Station ballot as Proposition 1. The wording College Station voters saw on their ballot was: "Shall Nancy Berry be removed from the office of Mayor by recall?"
|Nancy Berry, Mayor|
Katy-Marie Lyles, Proposition 1
Councilmember Lyles' attempted recall appeared on the May 14, 2011 College Station ballot as Proposition 1. The wording College Station voters saw on their ballot was: "Shall Katy-Marie Lyles be removed from the office of Councilmember, Place 4, by recall?"
|Katy-Marie Lyles, Councilmember|
Dave Ruesink, Proposition 1
Councilmember Ruesink's attempted recall appeared on the May 14, 2011 College Station ballot as Proposition 1. The wording College Station voters saw on their ballot was: "Shall Dave Ruesink be removed from the office of Councilmember, Place 6, by recall?"
|Dave Ruesink, Councilmember|
Recall supporters turned in about 6,200 signatures on recall petitions to election officials on January 10, 2011.
On January 24th College Station's City Secretary's Office announced it had verified enough signatures for the recall of all three officials.
After the signatures were verified the three members had until February 1, 2011 to resign from office or face a recall election in May. Berry, Lyles, and Ruesink did not resign.
City council members John Crompton and Dennis Maloney were not targeted for recall because their terms expire in May 2011.
A group that calls itself "SaveWellborn.org" led the recall effort.
Wellborn is an unincorporated community with a population of about 100. Under the leadership of Mayor Berry, College Station has been trying to annex the tiny unincorporated region. Residents of the region object to that. Karen Severn says, "You can have your dogs outside. You can ride a horse in the right of way In a city you need a permit to do a lot of those things, and those are things we do nearly everyday. We don't want street lights we don't want curbs."
Residents of Wellborn also object to not being allowed to vote on their own annexation. David Leatham, a resident of College Station, said, "It's not right for the mayor and city councilmen to not provide the opportunity for citizens in the Wellborn area to be able to make the decision as to who should provide those services."
Recall election date lawsuit
After signatures were verified in late January, a conflict arose between recall organizers and the city council over the date of the recall election, resulting in a lawsuit. SaveWellborn.org, the group leading the recall effort, wanted the election scheduled in accordance with the city charter, which would have put the recall election date no later than March 28th. The city council scheduled the election for May 14th in accordance with state law. A May 14th election would have placed the recall after the proposed date in April that the city council planned to vote on the annexation of Wellborn. Recall organizers filed a lawsuit to force the city to hold the recall on the date required in the city charter.
On March 3, 2011 Brazos County District Judge Travis Bryan ruled in favor of the city, upholding the city council's May 14th recall election date.
Path to the ballot
The ability to force a recall election in College Station is laid out in the city's charter. According to the recall rules set forth in that charter, a recall election can be mandated if a petition is signed by more than 40% of the total number of votes the official received when he or she was elected. These signatures need to be collected within 30 days of the time that the recall petition is filed and authorized for circulation.
1,553 signatures are required to force a recall election for Berry; the recall committee submitted 2,119.
Of the 2,119 signatures submitted for Berry, 1,558 were verified.
Katy Marie Lyles:
1,262 signatures are required to force a recall election for Lyles; the recall committee submitted 2,078.
Of the 2,078 signatures submitted for Lyles, 1,528 were verified.
1,160 signatures are required to force a recall election for Ruesink; the recall committee submitted 2,077.
Of the 2,077 signatures submitted for Ruesink, 1,502 were verified.
- Recall campaigns in Texas
- Political recall efforts, 2011
- Mayoral recalls
- City council recalls
- Brazos County, Texas ballot measures
- College Station, TX Election Results, May 14, 2011
- CBS News, Dallas, "Early Voting Begins For May 14 Texas Elections," May 2, 2011
- The Eagle, "College Station mayor, councilmembers beat recall effort," May 15, 2011
- WTAW, "College Station Recall Signatures Submitted," January 10, 2011
- WTAW.com, "CS Recall Petition Signatures Verified," January 24, 2011
- KBTX.com, "Ruesink Not Resigning From CS City Council," February 1, 2011
- WTAW, "McMillan: Signing Petitions 'Business, Not Personal'," December 20, 2010
- KBTX, "Wellborn Residents Attempt to Unseat City Leaders," December 9, 2010
- KBTX, "Petition Circulating to Recall Members of City Council and College Station Mayor," December 14, 2010
- WTAW.com, "College Station Sued Over Recall Election Date," January 28th, 2011
- WTAW.com, "Judge’s Ruling Allow CS Recall Election May 14th," March 3, 2011
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