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West Linn, Oregon recall (2014)

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An effort to recall Mayor John Kovash and council members Jenni Tan, Mike Jones and Jody Carson in West Linn, Oregon from their positions was launched in December 2013. The recall did not go to a vote.[1][2][3]

Recall proponent arguments

In their filing paperwork to launch the recall effort, proponents accused the mayor and city council of "failing to represent the interests of West Linn residents, putting the community's physical safety and financial security in danger by ignoring recommendations of commissions and advisory boards, and falling short of asserting their authority over City Manager Chris Jordan and the city attorney's office." Recall supporters also noted the council's violation of state open meeting laws, citing a finding by the Oregon Government Ethics Commission.[1][2]

The recall proponents also contended that Kovash and Carson violated state election law. Both Kovash and Carson paid a $100 fine in 2011 after failing to register as a political action committee before submitting a paid statement in support of a ballot measure.[1][2]

Also at issue was the expansion of a water treatment plan, a project unpopular with many West Linn residents, including the recall proponents.[1][2]

Officials' response

Carson defended himself and his fellow city officials, though he acknowledged citizen concerns over the expansion of the water treatment plant. "It's very difficult to have that kind of construction going on in your neighborhood and down your street. However, I do believe that the decision the city council made was for the long-range, overall good of the city and it's something that we really needed to do for our long-term water needs."[1][2]

Path to the ballot

See also: Laws governing recall in Oregon

Recall proponents filed paperwork in December 2013 to initiate the recall proceedings. Petitioners had until March 11 to collect the 1,844 signatures needed to trigger a recall election.[1][2] On March 11, 2014, the city reported that recall proponents failed to meet the signature-gathering deadline for all targeted officials except Carson (the deadline for Carson's petition was March 13, 2014). On March 12, 2014, recall proponents indicated that their efforts had come to an end, saying they had succeeded "in bringing public awareness to the way the council and city manager circumvented the public process in numerous decisions affecting the entire city."[3][4]

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