Recall of the Vincent City Council, Vincent, Alabama (2011)
A March 2011 effort to recall Ray McAllister, Bridgette Jordan Smith, Johnny Edwards, Larry King and Mary Lee Reynolds from their elected positions in Vincent, Alabama, was abandoned after a controversy regarding the laws governing recall in Alabama. McAllister is the mayor of Vincent, while Smith, Edwards, King, and Reynolds serve on the city council.
Reasons for recall
Charles Cantrell organized the recall effort. The recall campaign stemmed from the city council's approval of the rezoning of 886 acres of land to accommodate a limestone quarry to be operated by White Rock Quarries. Cantrell said, "This is something we have considered for some time as our elected officials in Vincent continue to turn their back on those of us who elected them to serve our best interests."
In response to the recall efforts, McAllister said, “We’re disappointed that some of the citizens feel that we’re not doing our job. We feel like we are. We feel that, as a council, we made a decision we felt was the best for the town of Vincent."
Path to the ballot
Cantrell submitted 130 signatures, representing 30% of the registered voters who voted in Vincent’s last election, to the town clerk. Cantrell said that his group referenced state statute 11-4E-168 of the Alabama Constitution, which states: “The mayor or any commissioner shall be subject to recall. To institute a recall election, any registered voter may present a petition to the city clerk having the signatures of no less than 30 percent of the registered voters having voted in the last preceding election."
However, the Alabama League of Municipalities said that recall could only be used in municipalities with commission forms of government.
McAllister said that Cantrell had misinterpreted the recall statute, and that the city council had no duty to respond to the recall petitions.